Wellington - Hurricanes player Rodney So’oialo has been suspended for one week for carelessly trampling on a player in the Hurricanes and Waratahs Super 14 match at Westpac Stadium, Wellington, on Saturday.
So’oialo was cited by citing commissioner John Wootton, for allegedly stamping or trampling on Waratahs player Phil Waugh in the 65th minute of the match, and appeared before SANZAR judicial officer Bruce Squire QC at the New Zealand Rugby Union offices in Wellington on Monday.
At the hearing Squire received reports from the match referee and assistant referees, viewed video footage of the incident and heard evidence from So’oialo, his Hurricanes coach and team manager.
Having viewed the video footage, Squire indicated there was reason to believe that the boot of another player, not So’oialo, was possibly responsible for the head injury to Waugh.
Although So’oialo conceded his boot had made contact with Waugh’s head, the point of contact appeared, from the videotape, to be different from that where the injury had been sustained.
Squire found the contact So’oialo made with Waugh was clearly not intentional but, nonetheless, found that it demonstrated an unacceptable degree of carelessness and risk of injury to that player.
For that reason, the citing complaint was made out.
So’oialo will be unavailable for selection for the Hurricanes’ next match against the Highlanders in Wellington this Friday.