Reds skipper Higginbotham suspended for 3 weeks
Sydney - Reds skipper Scott Higginbotham will miss three
weeks of Super Rugby following his red card early in his team's opening match
against the Rebels, SANZAAR said on Monday.
Higginbotham was sent off in the 10th minute for using his
shoulder in a forceful high tackle, reducing the Reds to playing with 14 men
for the rest of Friday's game and going down 45-19 in Melbourne.
Higginbotham pleaded guilty to the dangerous tackle charge
and will be out of action up to and including March 17, SANZAAR's judiciary
"With respect to sanction the Foul Play Review
Committee deemed the act of foul play merited a mid-range entry point of six
weeks due to the player's direct contact by his shoulder to his opponent's
head," panel chairperson Nigel Hampton said.
"However, taking into account mitigating factors
including the player's good record over a long career, the lack of injury to
the victim and his guilty plea at the earliest possible opportunity, the Foul
Play Review Committee reduced the suspension to three weeks."
The Reds may also lose lock Lukhan Tui to suspension after
he was cited to appear at a SANZAAR judicial committee hearing for a lifting
tackle in the same match.
Tui received a yellow card by the referee for his lifting
tackle which speared Rebels scrum-half Will Genia head-first into the ground in
the first half of the game.