Hartley banned for six weeks

Dylan Hartley (Getty Images)
Dylan Hartley (Getty Images)

Cape Town - England captain Dylan Hartley has been suspended for six weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in London on Wednesday.

Hartley appeared at the hearing after his club's Champions Cup Round 3 match against Leinster at Franklin's Gardens.

Hartley was sent off by referee, Jérôme Garcès (France), for striking the Leinster flanker, Sean O'Brien, in the 58th minute of the match in contravention of Law 10.4 (a).

Law 10.4 (a) Striking

Under World Rugby's Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4 (a), Striking a player with a hand, arm or fist carries the following sanction entry points - Low End: 2 weeks; Mid-Range: 5 weeks; Top End: 8 to 52 weeks

An independent Disciplinary Committee consisting of Simon Thomas (Wales), Chairman, Rhian Williams (Wales) and Marco Cordelli (Italy) heard submissions from Hartley, who pleaded guilty to the offence, as well as from the player's legal representative, Richard Smith QC, and the Northampton Saints Team Manager, Paul Shields.

The Committee also heard evidence and submissions from the EPCR Disciplinary Officer, Liam McTiernan.

In upholding the red card decision, the Committee found that the offence was at the mid-range of World Rugby's sanctions and selected five weeks as the appropriate entry point.

Taking into account Hartley's poor disciplinary record, the Committee added two weeks to the sanction and then reduced the sanction by one week due to the player's guilty plea before imposing a suspension of six weeks.

Hartley is free to play on Monday, January 23 2017. Both the player and EPCR have the right to appeal the decision.

loading... Live
Arsenal 1
Leicester City 0
Voting Booth
What is your favourite sport to watch on TV?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Rugby
46% - 3632 votes
Cricket
11% - 865 votes
Football
18% - 1392 votes
Athletics
2% - 148 votes
Boxing
1% - 64 votes
Cycling
2% - 165 votes
Golf
5% - 399 votes
Motorsport
8% - 601 votes
Tennis
3% - 240 votes
Water sports
1% - 64 votes
American sports
1% - 61 votes
MMA / WWE / UFC
3% - 205 votes
Vote