Chris Ashton received a six-week suspension a major suspension following the red card he received against Northampton Saints last Saturday. The Worcester Warriors wing appeared last night before an independent disciplinary panel online.
Ashton received the red card from referee Andrew Jackson for dangerous play in a ruck contrary to World Rugby Law 9.20a. The wing entered fiercely to hit a player directly instead of contesting the fixed formation.
The former England team player challenged the charge, but was confirmed by the independent disciplinary panel made up of Gareth Graham (chair) with Sean Enright and Tony Wheat, who granted him a six-week suspension. You can play again on June 1, 2021.
The panel concluded that “the player accepted that he had committed an act of foul play, but contested the red card on the grounds that he had not made direct contact with his opponent’s head. Any player who chooses to contest a red card must prove on the balance of probabilities that the referee’s decision to award a red card was incorrect.”.
“The panel took into account all the evidence that had been provided to it and does not believe that the arbitrator’s decision was incorrect. The referee had concluded that the player had committed a dangerous act of play in a ruck or maul that exceeded the threshold of the red card, which involved contact with the head / neck area ”.
“Such an offense carries a minimum mid-range entry point of six weeks. The player does not have a good disciplinary record and the panel increased the sanction by one week to take into account this aggravation ”.
“The player had not accepted the position. There was some limited mitigation, even due to the positive way the player participated in the audience. The panel concluded that his sanction could be reduced by one week. Therefore, the player is suspended for a period of six weeks. “