Cardiff Blues scrum-half Lloyd Williams and Newcastle Falcons prop Kyle Cooper have been given the all-clear to continue playing after appearing at respective Challenge Cup disciplinary hearings. Wales half-back Williams, who played off the bench in last month’s Guinness Six Nations win in Italy, was cited for an alleged 78th-minute stamp on London Irish’s Paddy Jackson in the 78th minute of the April 2 round of 16 clash at Brentford that was dramatically won by Irish in the closing play.
An independent disciplinary committee comprising Richard Whittam (England, chair), David Humphreys (Ireland) and Marcello D’Orey (Portugal) considered video imagery of the incident and heard evidence from Williams, who did not accept the charge, from Richard Locke, the player’s legal representative, from Cardiff boss Dai Young, from Blues manager Gafyn Cooper, and from EPCR disciplinary officer Liam McTiernan.
The committee decided that although Williams had committed an act of foul play, his actions did not warrant a red card and on that basis, the complaint was dismissed and he is free to play when Cardiff next have a match.
Cooper, meanwhile, will receive no further sanction following his independent disciplinary hearing arising from Newcastle’s quarter-final loss at Leicester last Saturday. The prop was shown a red card by referee Romain Poite in the 77th minute after receiving two yellow cards for repeated scrum infringements.
Judicial officer Whittam considered the case and upheld the red card decision, but the fact the player was sent off was deemed to be sufficient punishment in the circumstances and no further sanction was imposed. Cooper is free to play and will be available for Newcastle’s weekend Gallagher Premiership game at home to Bristol.
With 2017 Lions staff Howley, Borthwick, Rowntree and Farrell all unavailable, Gatland has shaken up his 2021 staff line-up https://t.co/P2ngCbbxel
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) April 13, 2021
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