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All Blacks prop Ethan de Groot learns fate after red card

By Finn Morton
Ethan de Groot looks on for the All Blacks. Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Prop Ethan de Groot will miss the All Blacks’ decisive Rugby World Cup clash with Italy later this month after receiving a multi-game ban for a high tackle.


De Groot will miss Tests against the Azzurri and Uruguay to round out pool play, but will be able to available for a potential quarter-final if he completes the Coaching Intervention Programme.

Playing against Namibia in Toulouse last week, de Groot was shown a yellow card in the 72nd minute following a high shot on backrower Adriaan Booysen. The incident was upgraded to a red following an off-field review.

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The All Blacks got their Rugby World Cup campaign back on track with a comfortable 71-3 win at Stade de Toulouse, but the red card to de Groot was concerning.

It was later confirmed that de Groot would appear in front of an independent Disciplinary Committee which was chaired by Brenda Heather-Latu (Samoa) and joined by former players John Langford (Australia) and Jamie Corsi (Wales).

De Groot told the Committee that he’d “committed an act of foul play” according to a World Rugby statement, “but maintained that the red card threshold had not been met.”

The independent Committee decided that the “degree of danger was high” and that de Groot had “put himself in a position to complete a legal tackle.”


It was determined that de Groot hadn’t made a genuine attempt to wrap his arms, so no mitigation could be applied to downgrade the incident from a red card.

De Groot has the right to appeal this decision within 48 hours of the verdict.


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