• Rebels scrumhalf suspended

    Nic Stirzaker has received a one-week ban for stamping on Richie McCaw in Christchurch on Friday.

    The incident took place in the third minute of the match.

    'I took into account that the player admitted stamping which was accepted as reckless to the point of contact,' said duty judicial officer Nicholas Davidson. 'I found the breach was clear on the evidence as the player paused and lifted his leg high, before applying a vertical stamp to the groin area, for which he had no tenable excuse or explanation.

    '[The] Crusaders No 6 suffered minor grazing but was able to play on. Had injury of any consequence resulted, then the entry point for sanction would have been at least mid-range.

    'The player has a good disciplinary record and thus is entitled to a discount of one week from the two-week lower-end entry point, which results in a suspension of one week, up to and including Sunday, 22 February.'

    Meanwhile, no further sanction will be imposed upon James Horwill after he was issued a red card during the match against the Brumbies at the weekend. The Reds lock received two yellow cards, in the 48th and 75th minutes.

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    Simon Borchardt