BRIAN O’DRISCOLL HAS been handed a three-week ban by 6 Nations disciplinary chiefs this afternoon.
The Leinster and Ireland star faced a citing hearing in London today in the wake of the incident with Simone Favaro in Ireland’s 22-15 Six Nations defeat by Italy at the weekend.
The decision means the talismanic centre will miss two Rabo games for Joe Schmidt’s side and the Amlin Challenge Cup quarter-final against Wasps at Adams Park on 5 April.
The 34-year-old, who is widely expected to retire at the end of the season, was sin-binned for the incident by referee Wayne Barnes. However, on further viewing, citing commissioner Aurwel Morgan decided he should face a disciplinary hearing.
“The player admitted that he had committed an act of foul play but denied that it warranted a red card,” a statement reads. “The Disciplinary Committee, chaired by Robert Williams (Wales) along with Mike Hamlin and John Doubleday (both England), upheld the citing complaint and determined that the offending warranted a red card.
“In applying the sanction, the Disciplinary Committee considered that the stamp, contrary to Law 10.4(b), was in the mid range of the IRB’s sanctions for the type of offence and, after hearing from Brian O’Driscoll and his representatives, allowed a reduction of two weeks of mitigation, particularly taking into account the player’s exemplary previous playing and disciplinary record. Brian O’Driscoll is suspended until 8 April 2013 and has the right of appeal.”
O’Driscoll’s sin-binning was only the second of a 14-year career, including 125 caps for Ireland.
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