Red-carded Connacht pair Shane Delahunt and Abraham Papali’i have each been banned for a period of three weeks after they were sent off in the recent Guinness PRO14 loss to Munster at Aviva Stadium. 

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Connacht were forced to play the whole of the second half last month with 13 players after Delahunt was punished by referee Frank Murphy for his reckless/dangerous collision with CJ Stander while Papali’i was dismissed for his dangerous tackle on Conor Murray.  

The outcome of the Delahunt hearing read: “The player accepted that his actions warranted a red card for foul play. The incident was deemed a mid-range offence, which carries a six-week suspension.

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RugbyPass brings you Game Day, the behind the scenes documentary on the 2018 Guinness PRO14 final at Aviva Stadium featuring Leinster and Scarlets

“In light of the player’s previous clean disciplinary record, early acceptance of the red card, cooperation with procedure and remorse shown, he was granted the maximum (50 per cent) mitigation from the entry point sanction, bringing his ban to three weeks. As the 2020/21 season fixtures are not yet finalised, the ban will span over the course of three meaningful games.”

Papali’i, meanwhile, was left to remember his Connacht PRO14 debut for all the wrong reasons as the signing from Bay of Plenty was carded 25 minutes into the Irish interprovincial match. His hearing judgment read: “The player accepted that his actions warranted a red card for foul play. The incident was deemed a mid-range offence, which carries a six-week suspension. 

“The player’s previous clean disciplinary record and cooperation with procedure warranted application of maximum (50 per cent) mitigation, bringing his ban to three weeks. The player was reminded to be mindful of high tackles going forward.”

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Andrew Conway scored a brace of tries as Munster took advantage of the two first-half red cards to help Munster win 49-12 and qualify for a semi-final which they lost five days later back at the Aviva against champions Leinster.

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