Francois Louw has been suspended for three weeks following today's disciplinary hearing.
Louw was cited by the match Citing Commissioner, Tim Lowry (Ireland), for making contact with the eye area of the Benetton Rugby second row, Marco Fuser, in the 77th minute of the match in contravention of Law 10.4 (m).
Todd Blackadder commented: “We are disappointed to lose Francois for three weeks, but accept the decision. There was absolutely no malice in Francois’s actions, and there was another incident at the time for which the opposition player has been cited for. However, we all know that you cannot put your hands on someone’s face due to the risk to player safety, and we accept the sanction imposed by the authorities.
“Our attention is now focused on preparing for our game against Scarlets on Friday night.”
Law 10.4 (m) Contact with the eye area
Under World Rugby's Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4 (m), contact with the eye area, carries the following sanction entry points - Low End: 4 weeks; Mid-range: 8 weeks; Top end: 12 to 52 weeks.
The Committee upheld the citing complaint and determined that the offence warranted a red card. The Committee found that the offence was at the low end of World Rugby's sanctions and selected four weeks as the appropriate entry point.
There were no aggravating factors, however, as Louw did not have a clean disciplinary record, the Committee decided to reduce the sanction by only one week before imposing a suspension of three weeks.
Louw is free to play on Monday, 6th November and both the player and the EPCR have the right to appeal the decision.