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Dalton Papalii handed suspension for hit on Richie Mo'unga

By Ben Smith
(Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

Blues captain Dalton Papalii has been handed a three-week suspension for his late tackle on Crusaders first five Richie Mo’unga during the 15-3 defeat in Christchurch.


The ban effectively rules Papalii out for the rest of the regular season with just three rounds remaining until the play-offs.

The All Black openside was yellow carded at the time by referee Nic Berry which was upgraded upon review to a red.

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The SANZAAR judicial committee charged Papalii under law 9.13, a player must not tackle an opponent early, late or dangerously.

“With respect to sanction, the Foul Play Review Committee held the act of foul play was reckless, with direct head contact and no significant mitigating factors present,” a statement read.

“The FPRC found the incident was dangerous and after considering the relevant factors decided the foul play merited a mid-range entry point of 6 weeks.

“Taking into account mitigating factors, including the Player’s exemplary record and guilty plea, the Judicial Committee reduced the suspension by three weeks.”


The Blues play the Reds, Hurricanes and Highlanders over the final three rounds in their bid to secure a home quarter-final.

They currently sit fifth on the ladder three competition points below the Hurricanes and Crusaders who occupy third and fourth respectively.


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