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Red-carded Rebels star Reece Hodge handed Super Rugby Pacific suspension

By Alex McLeod
(Photo by Kelly Defina/Getty Images)

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Melbourne Rebels star Reece Hodge has been handed a one-week suspension by SANZAAR after he was sent from the field in his side’s Super Rugby Pacific loss to the Force on the weekend.

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Hodge was brandished two yellow cards, one for cynical play and the other for a deliberate knock down, in the second half of the Rebels’ 28-3 defeat in Melbourne on Saturday, with the second culminating in a red card.

Upon review of Hodge’s dismissal, the SANZAAR found the 54-test Wallabies utility back guilty of his indiscretions and have banned him from playing in this week’s match between the Rebels and Fijian Drua on the Sunshine Coast.

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The verdict leaves the Rebels without one of their most experienced squad members as they continue their search for their first win of the new season.

The Rebels will continue to do so without many of their Wallabies, with 2021 World Rugby Breakthrough Player of the Year nominee Andrew Kellaway (foot), Rob Leota (hamstring) and Pone Fa’amausili (calf) all sidelined with injury.

Hopes remain high, however, that Kellaway will feature this weekend, which could prove helpful given his versatility as both a wing and fullback.

Others who remain unavailable due to injury include loose forward Josh Kemeny and lock Trevor Hosea, while Wallabies hooker Jordan Uelese and wing Lachie Anderson are in a race against time to prove their fitness for the match against the Drua.

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That fixture on Friday, which has been relocated from Brisbane due to flooding at Suncorp Stadium, stands as a bottom-of-the-table clash, with both team occupying 11th and 12th spots, respectively.

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