# Munster Rugby
Paul O’Connell loses appeal against four-week ban
The Munster lock will stay suspended until January 10, but will still be back in time for Munster’s last two Heineken Cup games.

MUNSTER SKIPPER Paul O’Connell has this evening lost his appeal against his four-week ban following his red card in the province’s Heineken Cup game versus Ospreys last week.

O’Connell, a second half substitute, was given his marching orders ten minutes from time for striking Ospreys flanker Jonathan Thomas with his elbow during his side’s 22-16 win.

Yesterday he had been granted leave to appeal yesterday when an ERC judicial officer found that O’Connell had not intended to injure Thomas; today, however, a teleconference of an appeal committee today refused to shorten the four-week penalty the Lions captain had already been given.

The three-man committee found that O’Connell and his representatives had not given any demonstration that the original four-week penalty had been in error or that it should have been changed in any way.

O’Connell will remain suspended, therefore, until January 10. He will miss the December 27 away Magners League clash to Connacht, and the home tie versus Ulster on New Years’ Day.

He will also be out of action for the visit of Glasgow Warriors on January 8, but will be eligible to feature in Munster’s final two Heineken Cup pool matches against Toulon (away) and London Irish (home) later that month.