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Namibia RU: Lifetime playing ban for player who attacked referee

By Liam Heagney
The Namibia RU have issued a lifetime ban to a club player (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

A club player in Namibia has been given a lifetime ban from playing rugby following an altercation with a referee last month. He has also been suspended from all forms of rugby – including coaching, refereeing and administration – for 156 weeks through to May 31, 2027.


It was May 18 when a player from the Grootfontein club ran towards the match referee and tackled him to the ground. The player was red-carded and the referee called off the match with immediate effect due to concerns for his safety.

A disciplinary hearing was convened 12 days later, on May 30, and after reviewing the referee’s report and video footage of the red-carded incident, it was decided to heavily penalise the offending player.

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A video of the incident from the match versus the Falcons showed that play had stopped to allow the referee to reprimand another Grootfontein player when he was hit to the floor.

A social media statement by the Namibia Rugby Union read:  “A serious incident occurred involving a Grootfontein Rugby Club player who tackled the match referee, causing the game to end prematurely.

“Following a disciplinary hearing, the NRU has issued a lifetime ban from playing rugby and a 156-week ban from all rugby activities, effective May 30.

“Our commitment to the safety and integrity of rugby remains unwavering. Full details and the right to appeal can be found in our statement.”



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1 Comment
Bull Shark 19 days ago

Johnny Sexton got off lightly then.

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