Harlequins prop Joe Marler (file pic). Mark Pain/PA

Harlequins prop Joe Marler banned for comments made to Jake Heenan

The 32-year-old has been no stranger to disciplinary action during his career.

Updated at 22.10

ENGLAND PROP Joe Marler was on Friday banned for two weeks with a further four weeks suspended for comments made towards Bristol flanker Jake Heenan.

Harlequins star Marler, who accepted a charge of conduct prejudicial to the game, made remarks during the first half of Tuesday’s Premiership match that reportedly related to Heenan’s mother.

“The insulting and offensive comments made by the player were wholly inappropriate; such comments should form no part of the modern game,” said Gareth Graham, who chaired the disciplinary panel.

The 32-year-old Marler has been no stranger to disciplinary action during his career.

In 2016, he received a two-week suspension and was fined £20,000 for calling Wales prop Samson Lee “gypsy boy”, and two years ago Marler was given a 10-week ban for grabbing Wales lock Alun Wyn Jones’ genitals during a Six Nations international

Speaking immediately after the Harlequins match, Bristol rugby director Pat Lam said: “I brought Jake over from New Zealand to Connacht and to Bristol. He is like a son to our family and I have never seen him like that.

“It’s best to say one of the areas we are all trying to work on is the spirit of the game. I love Joe Marler, but something was said and there was a reaction from Jake I have never seen before.

“We are all custodians of the game — players, coaches – and one thing we all value and we all work hard to keep is the right values and spirit. Jake reacted to something that was said.”

– © AFP 2022

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