Pape gets 10-week ban

Date published: February 19 2015

France second row Pascal Papé will miss the rest of the Six Nations after he was suspended for ten weeks for his knee on Jamie Heaslip.

The former French skipper was sin-binned for the offence in the 52nd minute of the game which led to Heaslip suffering three fractured vertebrae.

He was cited under Law 10.4 (a) for allegedly striking the lower back of an opponent with his knee in the 52nd minute of the RBS 6 Nations match between Ireland and France in Dublin on Saturday 14 Feburary 2015.

The disciplinary committee, chaired by Rod McKenzie (Scotland) along with Bill Dunlop (Scotland) and Ian Unsworth QC (England), having heard from the player and his representatives and viewed various TV angles of the incident, determined that Pascal Papé had committed an act of foul play which merited a red card rather than the on-field yellow card given by the match officials.

The disciplinary committee decided that the offence should be categorised at the top end of World Rugby's scale of seriousness and set an entry point of a 15-week suspension. It noted, further the absence of aggravating factor and the existence of certain mitigating factors, including the player's admission of foul play and his expressions of remorse for what had occurred and the injury sustained by his opponent, in applying a five week (33%) reduction from the entry points.

Papé is suspended for ten weeks and has the right of appeal.

With Papé suspended, Clermont second row Sébastien Vahaamahina has been called into the French squad to face Wales next weekend.