Five Spanish players suspended following controversial World Cup qualifier

Harry Kimble Roar Guru

By Harry Kimble, Harry Kimble is a Roar Guru

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    At last, Rugby Europe has handed down its decision regarding the incident after the Belgium/Spain match last month when several Spanish players confronted the Romanian referee, Vlad Iordachescu.

    Below is the statement issued by Rugby Europe:

    “Rugby Europe Independent Judicial Committee met on Tuesday, April 17th, 2018 to consider the cases of the Spanish rugby players cited for the overflow at the end of the 2018 Rugby Europe Championship game between Belgium and Spain, played on March 18th 2018.

    “Chaired by Professor Lorne Crerar (Scotland), assisted by Mr Jean-Claude Legendre (France) and Mr Aliaksandr Danilevich (Belarus), the Independent Committee has convened the following players: Pierre Barthère, Mathieu Belie, Lucas Guillaume, Guillaume Rouet, Sébastien Rouet as well as the Spanish rugby union’s representatives (F.E.R).

    After considering the charges against each player and the F.E.R., the Committee heard the arguments and evidence of all parties.

    After deliberations, the Judicial Committee has issued the following sanctions:
    Guillaume Rouet (n°9): physical abuse of a Match Official and verbal abuse: 36 weeks
    Sébastien Rouet (n°20): physical abuse of a Match Official and verbal abuse: 43 weeks
    Pierre Barthere (n°6): threatening actions/words at a Match Official: 14 weeks
    Lucas Guillaume (n°7): threatening actions/words at a Match Official: 14 weeks
    Mathieu Belie (n°10): threatening actions/words at a Match Official: 14 weeks

    “These sanctions are applicable immediately for all players’ rugby activities (clubs and national teams). Players have the right of appeal within seven days of receipt of the written decision. The misconduct complaint against the Spanish rugby union was suspended and a further hearing date will be set.”

    These suspensions appear to be very light. All will be eligible for next year’s European Rugby Championship and the Rugby World Cup if Spain survives to make it.

    If Spain has to contest the repechage game, then three players will have finished their suspensions by then and will eligible to play in it.

    Rugby Europe has dodged a decision against the Federation Espagnol de Rugby (FER) but will further investigate the complaint at a later date. Who knows what its finding will be and how long it will take.

    With regard to player eligibility, Rugby Europe appears to have passed this on to World Rugby to give its verdict. Four nations could be disqualified – Belgium, Romania, Russia and Spain – so a lot of thought has to be made before any penalties are handed down.

    There is also the assessment of Iordachescu’s performance to be released although it has already been revealed that he will not referee another international.

    The eligibility question will have to be resolved before deciding whether the Belgium/Spain result will stand, be replayed, overturned or cancelled.

    It is expected that World Rugby’s statement on the matters will be handed down within a week.

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    The Crowd Says (5)

    • Roar Guru

      April 20th 2018 @ 2:35am
      Harry Jones said | April 20th 2018 @ 2:35am | ! Report


      Noted: “… it has already been revealed that he will not referee another international.”

    • Roar Guru

      April 20th 2018 @ 4:24am
      The Neutral View From Sweden said | April 20th 2018 @ 4:24am | ! Report

      World Rugby has also stated that they believe a replay between Belgium and Spain is in the best interest of the game.
      If no country has breached any eligible Laws there will be a replay.

    • April 20th 2018 @ 4:49am
      riddler said | April 20th 2018 @ 4:49am | ! Report

      what happens when a soccer culture meets a rugby game..

      more common than not here..

    • April 20th 2018 @ 2:49pm
      felix said | April 20th 2018 @ 2:49pm | ! Report

      If the boks were half spanish in 2011 Bryce Lawrence mite of deservedly lost a few teeth!.

    • April 21st 2018 @ 11:52am
      Cantab said | April 21st 2018 @ 11:52am | ! Report

      Crazy all round.

      I don’t understand why rugby keeps on shooting itself in the foot with its referee appointments.

      Neutral refs/officials ….it’s not that hard.

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