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Ulster flanker gets four-week ban for in-air tackle he saw red for against Connacht

The disciplinary panel concluded that a mid-range entry point sanction was appropriate, but halved it.

ULSTER’S MATTY REA has been banned for four weeks off the back of his red-card offence in last week’s inter-pro defeat to Connacht in Belfast.

Andrew Brace red cards Matthew Rea Rea being handed his marching orders. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

The 25-year-old flanker appeared in front of a Guinness Pro14 disciplinary panel via video conference today and it was decided that mid-range entry point sanction (of eight weeks) was appropriate.

Rea’s clean disciplinary record along with the fact that there were no aggravating or migitating factors meant that the ban was halved, so Ulster man is free to play from Monday, 5 November 2018.

On the incident in question, Rea was shown a straight red card by referee Andrew Brace in the 41st minute at Kingspan Stadium last Friday following a collision with Connacht’s Cian Kelleher.

Matty-Rea-red Source: eir Sport

The in-match sanction was dished out under Law 9.17 – A player must not tackle, charge, pull, push or grasp an opponent whose feet are off the ground.

And a statement from Guinness Pro14 following today’s disciplinary decision reads:

“The player accepted that he had committed an act of foul play but did not accept that it warranted a red card.

“The Disciplinary Committee, comprising of Pamela Woodman (Chair), Kathrine Mackie and Ian Douglas (all Scotland), concluded that the player had committed an act of foul play, that that act of foul play warranted a red card and so the referee’s decision to issue the red card was not wrong.

“The player had accepted that his opponent’s head had hit the ground as a consequence of the incident. In determining entry point, the Committee took into account the direction from World Rugby that “any act of foul play which results in contact with the head shall result in at least a mid-range sanction” and concluded that a mid-range entry point (of eight weeks) was appropriate.

“The Committee took into account that there were no aggravating factors, the player’s clean disciplinary record and other mitigating factors and applied full mitigation of 50 per cent, meaning that the player is free to play on Monday, November 5, 2018.

“The player was reminded of his right to appeal.”

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Emma Duffy

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