Clermont flanker gets five-week ban

Date published: October 23 2014

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Clermont Auvergne player, Julien Bardy, has been suspended for five weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in Dublin.

Clermont Auvergne player, Julien Bardy, has been suspended for five weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in Dublin on Thursday, arising from the Champions Cup Round One match against Saracens on Saturday, 18 October.

Bardy was cited by the match Citing Commissioner, John Charles (Wales), for allegedly striking the Saracens number eight, Billy Vunipola, with his knee during the 78th minute of the Pool 1 game at Allianz Park in contravention of Law 10.4(a).

10.4 (a) Punching or striking. A player must not strike an opponent with the fist or arm, including the elbow, shoulder, head or knee(s).

Under the IRB Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4 (a) Striking a player with the knee carries the following sanction entry points – Low End: 3 weeks; Mid-Range: 8 weeks; Top End: 12+ to 52 weeks.

The independent Judicial Officer, Simon Thomas (Wales), heard evidence from Bardy, who pleaded guilty to the offence, from Clermont Auvergne’s legal representative, Charles Fribourg, and from the tournament Disciplinary Officer, Roger O’Connor.

In upholding the citing complaint, the Judicial Officer determined that the offence warranted a red card and that it was in the mid-range (8 weeks) of the IRB sanctions for offences of this nature. As there were no aggravating factors, he reduced the suspension by three weeks due to the player’s guilty plea, his clean record, and good conduct and remorse during the hearing.

The five-week suspension will run over a seven-week term as the Judicial Officer chose to take into account two weeks during the period when the player would not have played. Bardy is therefore free to play on Monday, 8 December 2014.

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