IRB appeals All Black's ban

2012-11-21 20:27

London - The International Rugby Board (IRB) said on Wednesday it would appeal against the "unduly lenient" one-week ban handed down to New Zealand's Adam Thomson for stamping on Scotland's Alasdair Strokosch.

Thomson, yellow-carded during the world champions' 51-22 win over Scotland at Murrayfield on November 11, was subsequently cited for stamping on Strokosch.

But despite independent IRB judicial officer Jean-Noel Couraud finding him guilty of an offence at a hearing in London last Wednesday, the Frenchman imposed a ban of just one week.

However, the global governing body can initiate an appeal under a revised regulation in its own rule-book which took effect on June 1.

An IRB statement issued on Wednesday said: "The International Rugby Board has confirmed that it will appeal what it strongly believes to be an unduly lenient sanction handed down to New Zealand forward Adam Thomson for stamping or trampling on the head of an opponent.

"As custodians of rugby worldwide, the IRB has a duty to protect its image, values and integrity together with the welfare of players at all levels in order that the sport can continue its unprecedented growth and welcome more men, women and children to the rugby family.

"The IRB strongly believes that the sanction of one week is unduly lenient for this particular act of foul play and not aligned with the sanctions handed down in similar cases."

The global governing body's statement added: "The IRB firmly believes it is in the best interests of the game and its integrity to exercise its ability to appeal the Thomson decision."

As for the timing of the appeal tribunal, the IRB said: "The logistical arrangements for the hearing will be announced shortly."

Scotland coach Andy Robinson suggested after the match that Thomson had been fortunate to escape a red card.

Thomson's ban meant he missed last Saturday's 42-10 win over Italy in Rome. However, as things stand, he is available for this Saturday's Test against Wales in Cardiff.

New Zealand coach Steve Hansen is due to announce his side to play Wales on Thursday, with the All Blacks concluding their tour against England at Twickenham on December 1.

Former England hooker Brian Moore, in language not far removed from the IRB's own words this Wednesday (November 21), reacted to Thomson's suspension by labelling it "ludicrously lenient".

And the punishment was in marked contrast to the eight-week ban handed out the same day to Australia lock Rob Simmons for a "tip tackle" on France flanker Yannick Nyanga during the Wallabies 33-6 defeat in Paris on November 10.

As pundits and Twitter commentators reacted against Couraud's ruling last Wednesday, IRB chief executive Brett Gosper reacted by using the social networking site to say: "The IRB will review this case as it is a match under our jurisdiction.

"If we decide to take action we will make it public,"
the Australian, who took up his post in June, added.

Samoa centre Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu slammed the Thomson verdict and compared it with the three-week ban he received from England's Rugby Football Union last year for tweets about Owen Farrell.

"I got 3 weeks for sarcastic tweets. So had I just rucked Farrells head I would have got only a week? Its just so comical these days," Fuimaono-Sapolu posted.


  • stefan.vosloo.33 - 2012-11-21 20:52

    Great, hopefully this will set the standard for all citings.

      ruan.smith.14 - 2012-11-21 21:41

      Why does New Zealand guys always get light bans? if it was a Sa guy it wouldve been 3-6weeks!!!!

      James - 2012-11-22 07:57

      I think its due to reputation, Players like Bakkies have terrible records while Thomson is known as a clean player.

      TravieGrif - 2012-11-22 09:14

      James that is a rubbish excuse on two counts. Firstly, Thomson is not known as a clean player. He has not been cited before, but has plenty of yellows to his name. Second count is that your reputation is not the correct basis on which to make a judgement. He has done the crime, now must do the time. I believe that there should be worse punishment for repeat offenders, but a sentence should not be lightened because of a 'good reputation'. He has put his boots on another players head! The punishment needs to send a message to those playing the sport at every level that this is not acceptable behaviour, which a 1-week ban fails to do

  • louis.langenhoven - 2012-11-21 20:56

    janee- if it was ou Bakkies it was the death penalty in some or other old fashioned and painful way. The NZ guys does seem to get of easily in these situations.

  • Rich.Dolgun - 2012-11-21 21:05

    The IRB might as well appeal against the "unduly lenient" two-week ban handed down to Dean Greyling while their at it.

      omge.klits - 2012-11-21 21:53

      Should give him player of the year for teaching McCaw about the offside rule . . .

      Rich.Dolgun - 2012-11-21 22:09

      Theres only one player of the year award and McCaw will probably get it. That would give him a total of four - any Saffas got it more than once?

      pieter.thefuture - 2012-11-21 22:11

      I think Dean Greyling got a lifetime ban from the bok team after that game...

      Rich.Dolgun - 2012-11-21 22:49

      Spot on Pieter - they'd need to be fairly desperate to give him another run in the green and gold.

  • fanie.viljoen.73 - 2012-11-21 21:06

    What a joke, took them soooo looong to get to such a decision.

  • fef.gericke - 2012-11-21 21:06

    why dont they take steps against the idiot that sited Eben?

      Jimmy NZ - 2012-11-21 21:21

      Why don't you start a Facebook petition? You can accuse anybody of anything, hence they have a committee to arbitrate a verdict... The right verdict was given, The End, Move on...

  • sean.bagley.50 - 2012-11-21 21:15

    I thought that was a rather interesting ban on Adam Thomson.One week suspension for what was only called a "tap" by some when others say it was infact stamping on Strokosch head.Just look at what led up to it in the first place.Strokosh was tied down in what could only be called an unmovable situation where both his hands were unable to protect himself if what ever happens. Also Thompson had punched Strokosch earlier in the match so who is to say that wasn't opportunistic by Thompson to finally get really mean with Strokosch when he was at his most vulnerable and defenseless a position to be in?The All Black apologist will now come out and say Thompson didn't mean it or it wasn't malicious as Thomson is not known to be a "dirty player" unlike some of the Samoans for example that break your ribs in some of their tackles. If Higginbottom can take his full on punishment then why go soft on Adam Thompson?Etsebeth on Sharpe got his punishment,Greyling on McCaw got his ban so where is the consistency hey you hypocrites citing officers/IRB clowns?

      gsaker1 - 2012-11-22 06:58

      Sean u twat - no teams get a chance to defend or challenge an IRB challenge so no the AllBalck nor anyone else will be claiming anything - no the system b4 u make coments mate - and insidently Thompson has a clean record in the game which they took into consideration...also in comparison to the REAL stomping we used to get in rugby it WAS nothing but a tap...the player on the ground got up and didn't give a toss only the linesman did so get over it

  • Jimmy NZ - 2012-11-21 21:19

    Ban him forever... Don't need that kind of player in the All Blacks and he is totally over-rated (not bad at S15 level). Looks like people are gonna have to stop moaning at the IRB! Etzebeth got off (correctly) and Thompson is getting more (correctly)... Go The Blackness...

      nervern - 2012-11-21 22:06

      Vir eens maak jy sin...behalwe vir die laaste part van jou post.

      Caleb - 2012-11-22 03:00

      yep agree.

  • Jacques - 2012-11-22 05:14

    What a joke. Etzebeth gets a howler of a citing. Bakkies botha would have been banned for a year. Richie Mcaw is openly championed as someone who can bend the rules, while such cynical acts gets a one week ban? While some Samoan got 3 weeks for tweeting the IRB is a bunch of clowns? #startthecar

  • gsaker1 - 2012-11-22 06:51

    The English IRB representative only did this after pressure from two British journalists on twitter...the same thing happened when Carter committed a minor offense in 2009 and yet again the journalist demanded he be banned - of course - in the same game and English player committed a far more serious infringement and was not even reviewed by the British IRB and of course their press said nothing... hypocritical garbage from a English IRB that get told what to do by his media

      donavan.boshoff - 2012-11-22 16:45

      So what are you saying? England are favoured in the north and NZ favoured down south?

  • fanie.essgee - 2012-11-22 08:40

    Well done...

      riette.dekock - 2012-11-22 10:11

      Tired of All Blacks being the untouchables!

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