Howard escapes punishment
NEWS: The complaint against the Worcester Warriors fullback, Ben Howard has been dismissed.
Howard had to appear in front of an independent Disciplinary Hearing in London on January 25 following his club's European Rugby Challenge Cup match against Ensei-STM at Sixways.
Howard was cited by the match Citing Commissioner, Tim Lowry (Ireland), for allegedly striking the Enisei-STM wing, Denis Simplikevich, with his knee in the 19th minute of the match in contravention of Law 10.4 (a).
Under World Rugby's Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4 (a), striking with the knee, carries the following sanction entry points - Low End: 3 weeks; Mid-range: 8 weeks; Top end: 12 to 52 weeks.
An independent Disciplinary Committee consisting of Roger Morris (Wales), Chairman, Jean-René Hegoburu (France), and Tom Rees (England), heard submissions and evidence from Howard, who pleaded not guilty to the complaint, from the Worcester Warriors legal representative, Ray Tully, and from the Worcester Warriors Assistant Academy Manager, Mark Hewitt. The Committee also heard submissions and evidence from the EPCR Disciplinary Officer, Liam McTiernan.
The Committee determined that Howard had not committed an act of foul play that warranted a red card. The citing complaint was therefore dismissed and Howard is free to play.
Meanwhile, Enisei-STM wing, Igor Kurashov, will not be further sanctioned following his sending off during the same match.
Kurashov was shown a red card by referee, Daniel Jones (Wales), in the 69th minute of the match after he had been shown a second yellow card. Both yellow cards were for technical infringements.
An independent Judicial Officer, Roger Morris (Wales), considered the case on Wednesday, January 25 and decided that Kurashov's red card was a sufficient sanction and that no further disciplinary action was warranted.