Van Wyk slapped with three week suspension

Outgoing Hurricanes wing Kobus van Wyk has been handed a three-week ban for his dangerous tackle against the Chiefs last weekend.

The 28-year-old South African was yellow carded for James Doleman after picking up Chiefs scrumhalf Brad Weber and dumping him on the ground towards the end of the first half.

Van Wyk was subsequently cited for contravening Law 9.18: A player must not lift an opponent off the ground and drop or drive that player so that their head and/or upper body make contact with the ground.

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Following a hearing on Thursday, during which Van Wyk pled guilty, he was handed a three-week suspension by a three-person judicial committee.

The committee, having conducted a detailed review of all of the available evidence, including all camera angles and additional evidence, including from Van Wyk and submissions from his legal representative, Aaron Lloyd, and determined that the act of foul play merited a low-end entry point of 6 weeks. This was primarily due to the reckless rather than intentional nature of the action which ultimately placed Van Wyk’s opponent in a vulnerable position but which did not cause an injury to the opponent.

However, Van Wyk’s clean disciplinary record, early guilty plea and genuine remorse were taking into account as mitigating factors and the sanction was reduced to just three weeks.

‘The Player is therefore suspended for 3 weeks, up to and including Saturday 29 August 2020,’ judicial committee chairperson, Stephen Hardy, outlined.

‘The Judicial Committee is aware of the issues involving the uncertainty of playing schedules as a result of the ongoing affects of Covid-19, and have accordingly reserved the right to revisit the sanction date in the event that the Player’s schedule is subsequently impacted.’

The ban won’t affect Van Wyk this weekend as he was left out of the Hurricanes matchday 23 for their final Super Rugby Aotearoa match against the Highlanders on Saturday. However, it could be carried over to the Premiership, which would mean a delayed start to life in England as Van Wyk is set to join the Leicester Tigers next week.

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