Sharks centre Jeremy Ward has received a five-week suspension for a dangerous off-the-ball tackle on Vodacom Bulls wing Rosko Specman.
The incident occurred in the 14th minute of the match between the Bulls and Sharks at Loftus on Saturday when Ward lifted Specman off the ground and dropped him dangerously.
The 23-year-old Ward escaped sanction at the time, but was later cited under 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.
The Sanzaar foul play review committee, led by Adam Casselden, deemed the act of foul play merited a mid-range entry point of 10 weeks due to World Rugby instructions that dictate any incident of foul play involving contact with the head must start at a mid-range level, but Ward’s ban was reduced to five weeks due to mitigating factors.
‘Taking into account the player’s age, relative inexperience, remorse, and the fact that he has pleaded guilty at the first available opportunity, the foul play review committee reduced the suspension to five weeks.’
Ward is therefore suspended for five weeks, up to and including Friday 19 April.
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