Aki cops 8-week ban for dangerous Senatla clear-out, to miss Ireland Test against Boks

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Bundee Aki receives a red card against the Stormers. (Photo by Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images)
Bundee Aki receives a red card against the Stormers. (Photo by Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images)

Ireland centre Bundee Aki is set to miss home Tests against world champions South Africa and Fiji after being handed an eight-week ban following his red card for Connacht last weekend.

The 32-year-old received his marching orders for a dangerous shoulder-to-head clear-out on Stormers wing Seabelo Senatla an hour into Saturday's United Rugby Championship clash, which the South African side won 38-15.

A URC statement on Thursday said the judicial officer overseeing the disciplinary process found that Aki's behaviour towards the referee following his dismissal "did not meet the expected standards of conduct or respect".

Aki will miss two of Ireland's three Tests in November as well as five rounds of URC matches for provincial side Connacht.

But his ban could be cut by a week if he successfully completes a head contact "coaching intervention" programme.

That would mean he could face Australia on 19 November.

Aki was previously suspended for red cards in 2019 and 2021 for foul play involving head contact.

Ireland and South Africa are in the same pool for the Rugby World Cup in France next year.


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