The outcome of Kyle Sinckler’s disciplinary hearing has been published, with the panel indicating that while his teeth made contact with Mostert’s arm, it wasn’t deliberate.
Sinckler was cited after the second Test between the British & Irish Lions and Springboks, but was free to play in the final Test after a lack of evidence his case was dismissed.
Although there was a mark present on Mostert’s arm, Sinckler denied the claim he had bitten Mostert. He instead argued that the Springbok lock was holding him into the ruck and that is why his teeth made contact with Mostert’s arm.
His defence posited that the contact with Sinckler’s teeth “occurred during the moving dynamics between the players in the ruck”. They specifically stated that “the mark resulted from contact with Mostert’s skin travelling across or being forced into, the exposed teeth of Sinckler, who did not wear a gum shield”.
In his evidence, Mostert said that he had experienced sharp pain and “felt a player from the British & Irish Lions biting” his forearm. His response was to call out, “You’re f***ing biting!”
Match referee Ben O’Keeffe said that although he was alerted to the incident at the next stoppage in play, he did not see any bite marks at that time.
South African team doctor Mampane concluded that the bite mark was caused by a human bite, but acknowledged that he was not sufficiently qualified to express an opinion on the mechanism of contact that caused the mark.
The judicial committee were therefore required, in the absence of video evidence, to determine whether, on the balance of probabilities, Sinckler had deliberately bitten Mostert. They determined that he hadn’t and the prop was therefore cleared to take part in the final Test.