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Itoje is free to play as citing complaint is dismissed

DISCIPLANRY NEWS: Saracens lock Maro Itoje will be available for his side’s Premiership matches after having his citing for a dangerous tackle against Bath dismissed.

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The England second row was yellow carded for a dangerous tackle during Saracnes’ 15-12 win over Bath last week.

Following the match, Itoje was cited for the incident and accused of making head contact with Bath’s Alfie Barbeary.

Itoje is alleged to have contravened World Rugby Law 9.13: A player must not tackle an opponent early, late or dangerously.

The 29-year-old appeared before an independent disciplinary panel on Tuesday, which dismissed the complaint.

According to the independent disciplinary panel chaired by Philip Evans, the tackle was not a red offence and the star is free to play with ‘immediate effect’.

“The panel heard and considered evidence from Maro Itoje and the Bath player and were able to examine the footage of the incident many times and from many different angles,” Evans said.

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“In particular, the panel watched the footage from the rear view of Itoje which, when considered alongside the rest of the footage, demonstrated it was more likely than not that contact was not initially with the head or simultaneously with the head and the body.

“Instead, contact with the head appears to come later and can properly be described as more glancing than direct in nature.

“In all of the circumstances, the panel did not conclude that a high degree of danger was created and therefore the on-field decision stands.

“The player is free to play with immediate effect.”

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The England star will be available for selection against Bristol Bears on Saturday, May 11.

The reigning Premiership champs Saracens are currently second in the table with two games of the regular season remaining.

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