WRWC 2014: Disciplinary update

(IRB.COM) Thursday 14 August 2014
 
 WRWC 2014: Disciplinary update
Women's Rugby World Cup 2014 is taking place at Marcoussis and Stade Jean Bouin in Paris

The following players have attended disciplinary hearings during Women's Rugby World Cup 2014 in France. 

Soteria Pulumu (Samoa)

Samoan fullback Soteria Pulumu has appeared before independent Judicial Officer Jeremy Summers in Paris on August 2, 2014, having received a red card for an act of Foul Play contrary to Law 10.4(j), namely lifting a player from the ground and dropping or driving that player (England scrum half Natasha Hunt) into the ground, following their match against England on August 1, 2014 in Stade Jean Bouin, Paris.

The player admitted the foul play. Having heard all the evidence, the Judicial Officer determined the player’s actions were reckless and warranted a mid-range sanction which has an entry point of 8 weeks. The sanction was aggravated by one week to take into account the need for a deterrent for so-called “tip tackles”. The Judicial Officer took into account various mitigating factors including the player’s remorse, conduct at the hearing, early admission and her clean disciplinary record and reduced the sanction by four weeks to a final sanction of 5 weeks.

In the context of the tournament, this means the player will miss the remaining matches at the tournament and is further suspended from 18 August to midnight on 24 August 2014.

The player has the right to appeal and the full written decision is available here.

Mandisa Williams

South African player Mandisa Williams (No. 8) has appeared before independent Judicial Officer Jeremy Summers in Paris on August 3, 2014, having been cited for acts of Foul Play contrary to Law 10.4(a) namely, striking a player with the fist or arm and Law 10.4(m) namely, acts contrary to good sportsmanship (contact with the eye(s) or eye area) in South Africa's Women’s Rugby World Cup match against Australia on August 1, 2014.  

Having heard all the evidence, the Judicial Officer determined that in relation to the acts contrary to Law 10.4(m), the player’s actions warranted a mid-range sanction, which has an entry point of 18 weeks.

Having applied various aggravating and mitigating factors including the player’s clean disciplinary record, the final sanction stands at 16 weeks.  The Judicial Officer further imposed a sanction of 2 weeks in relation to the acts contrary to Law 10.4(a) which will run concurrently.

In the context of the tournament, this means the player will miss the remaining 4 matches of the tournament and is suspended for a further 7 weeks until the end of the South African Rugby season on 27 September 2014 with the remaining 5 weeks of the suspension to be served at the start of next Rugby season in South Africa.

The player’s appeal was heard on Friday, August 8 and was not successful. The appeal decision is available here.

Citing Commissioner Warnings

A Citing Commissioner Warning is broadly equivalent to an off-field yellow card issued by the Citing Commissioner. If a player receives three Citing Commissioner Warnings during the Women’s Rugby World Cup (or a combination of three Citing Commissioner Warnings/yellow cards), the player will attend a judicial hearing and could face a sanction. 

Three Citing Commissioner warnings have been issued:

  • Sharlene Fagalilo (Samoa): for an act contrary to Law 10.4(e), dangerous tackling of an opponent, in the Spain v Samoa match;

  • Bui Baravilala (USA): for an act contrary to Law 10.4(a), striking a player with the arm, in the New Zealand v USA match;

  • Jocelyn Tseng (USA): for an act contrary to Law 10.4(c), kicking an opponent, in the New Zealand v USA match.

Rebecca de Filippo (Wales)

Wales centre Rebecca de Filippo has appeared before independent Judicial Officer Jeremy Summers (England) in Paris on August 15, 2014, having been cited by Citing Commissioner Yves Thieffine (France) for an act of Foul Play. The citing alleged that the player acted contrary to Law 10.4(j), namely, by lifting New Zealand scrum half Kendra Cocksedge from the ground and dropping or driving her into the ground during the match between New Zealand and Wales on August 13, 2014 in Marcoussis, Paris.

The player admitted the act of foul play. Having heard all of the evidence, the Judicial Officer determined the player’s actions were low-end offending, which carries an entry point of 4 weeks. The Judicial Officer did not consider that there were any aggravating factors in this case. The Judicial Officer took into account various mitigating factors including the player’s remorse, conduct at the hearing, early admission and her clean disciplinary record and reduced the sanction by the ordinary maximum allowed, 50%, to a final sanction of 2 weeks.

In the context of the tournament, this means the player will miss Wales' remaining match at WRWC 2014 and is further suspended for the first week of domestic competition with her club. She is free to play from 8 September 2014.

The player has the right to appeal. The full written decision is available here. 

Oneata Schwalge (Australia)

Australia prop Oneata Schwalger has appeared before independent Judicial Officer Sheriff Kathrine Mackie (Scotland) in Paris on August 17, 2014, having been cited by Citing Commissioner Bruce Rees-Russel (England) for an act of Foul Play contrary to Law 10.4(b), namely stamping on Wales lock Shona Powell-Hughes, during their match on August 17, 2014 in Marcoussis.

The player admitted the act of Foul Play. Having heard all the evidence, the Judicial Officer determined the player’s actions were reckless and warranted a mid-range sanction which has an entry point of five weeks. There were no aggravating factors. The Judicial Officer took into account various mitigating factors including the player’s early admission, clean disciplinary record, remorse and conduct at the hearing and reduced the sanction by two weeks to a final sanction of three weeks.

The player will be suspended for her next three weeks of domestic rugby in Australia. The player has the right to appeal.