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Nervy wait for France and red-carded Willemse

DISCIPLINARY NEWS: France could be without one of their key figures as the South African-born lock Paul Willemse faces a lengthy suspension.


The lock will attend an independent disciplinary hearing following his red card during France’s 17-38 defeat to Ireland in the Six Nations opener on Friday.

Willemse was awarded a yellow card by referee Karl Dickson in the 16th minute for a high hit on Andrew Porter.

Just six minutes after his return, the lock received his second yellow for a dangerous high tackle on Caelan Doris.

While the referee and his team initially handed a yellow card it was later upgraded to red upon bunker review.

In an official statement released by Six Nations on Monday, the organisation revealed that Willemse will appear before the independent Judicial Committee on Tuesday.

The second row has been cited for an act of foul play contrary to Law 9.13:


A player must not tackle an opponent early, late, or dangerously. Dangerous tackling includes, but is not limited to, tackling, or attempting to tackle an opponent above the line of the shoulders even if the tackle starts below the line of the shoulders. 

He has also been cited for contravening Law 9.15

Except in a scrum, ruck or maul, a player who is not in possession of the ball must not hold, push, charge or obstruct an opponent not in possession of the ball.

Both incidents will be dealt with at the same hearing.


The 31-year-old  will attend the hearing via video conference before an independent Judicial Committee consisting of Stephen Hardy – Chairman (Australia), joined by former internationals Leon Lloyd (England) and Sarah Smith (Scotland).

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