Tommy Bowe, the Ospreys wing (No 14), appeared at an independent Disciplinary Hearing in Dublin today (Thursday, 17 December, 2009), as a result of a citing arising from the Heineken Cup Pool 3 match against Viadana at Stadio Giglio, Emilio Reggio on Saturday, 12 December, 2009.
The citing lodged by the Citing Commissioner for the match, Iain Goodall (Scotland), was for lifting a Player from the ground and either dropping or driving that Player's head and/or upper body first into the ground whilst the Player's feet are off the Ground on Viadana wing Kaine Robertson (No 14) in contravention of Law 10.4 (i).
After considering the evidence, the independent Judicial Officer, HH Judge Jeff Blackett (England), determined than although the player had committed an act of foul play (so that the citing was upheld), the act of foul play had not warranted a red card. Accordingly the player is free to play.
i) Citing Commissioner
a) Citing Commissioners will be appointed by ERC for all Heineken Cup and all televised Amlin Challenge Cup matches and shall be entitled to cite a Player for any act or acts of Foul Play that in the Citing Commissioner's opinion warranted a citing.
b) For such matches Clubs will not have the power to cite a player but may refer incidents to the Citing Commissioner within 24 hours of the conclusion of the match.
c) The Citing Commissioner will have 50 hours from the start of the game to make a citing and the determination of the Citing Commissioner will be final and binding. In exceptional circumstances this deadline can be extended.
d) The Disciplinary Officer may forward the submitted Citing to a Citing Officer to determine whether there are sufficient grounds for the citing to progress.
e) The Disciplinary Officer will then bring a charge against the cited player.
(ii) Independent Disciplinary Hearing
a) Citing hearings will be heard by an independent Judicial Officer as soon as is practicable. Until the hearing a cited player is eligible to play in ERC tournaments
b) The independent Judicial Officer is chosen by the Chairman of the independent Disciplinary Panel, Professor Lorne Crerar.
c) The ERC Disciplinary Officer, Roger O'Connor, presents the case against the player
d) Both parties to the hearing (ERC and the player) have the right to appeal decisions of the independent Disciplinary Hearing. Appeals must be lodged within 72 hours of receiving the full written decision from the Chairman of the independent Disciplinary Committee
e) The full written decision of the independent Judicial Officer will be available on www.ercrugby.com/disciplinenews when the disciplinary process is complete
Finals Edition: Listen to the best guide to the European Rugby Cup Finals weekend in Dublin, which sees Leinster Rugby take on Stade Francais Paris at the RDS on Friday night in the Amlin Challenge Cup Final and then ASM Clermont Auvergne tackle Toulon in an all-French affair at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday.