Clermont second row Nathan Hines has been slapped with a six-week suspension after being found guilty of stamping.
Clermont second row Nathan Hines has been slapped with a six-week suspension after being found guilty of stamping on Scarlets wing Morgan Stoddart.
At an independent disciplinary hearing in Dublin on Thursday Hines pleaded not guilty to the offence which occurred during the first half of Clermont's 49-16 Heineken Cup win at Stade Marcel Michelin on Saturday.
Stoddart was given a second yellow and subsequent red card for lying in an offside position but Hines had already taken the law into his own hands.
The Judicial Officer found that Hines “had stamped on his opponent and had connected on more than one occasion.”
Employing the IRB recommended sanctions for Law 10.4 (b), he determined that the offence was at the mid-range entry point of five weeks. When considering aggravating factors, he added one week due to the player's disciplinary record, and imposed a suspension of six weeks.
Hines will be free to play on 26 November 2012 meaning the 35-year-old will miss this weekend's Heineken Cup clash against Exeter but will be available for Clermont's crunch Pool Five fictures against holders Leinster in December.
Both ERC and the player have the right to appeal the decision.