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'Reckless, career threatening' - Red card for enormous flying hit in France

By Ian Cameron
(Premier Sports)

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Castres forward Ryno Pieterse has been given a straight red card and will likely receive a lengthy ban for a huge flying hit on a Bordeaux player in France on Saturday. The South African flattened Bordeaux scrum-half Maxime Lucu as he cleared the ball with a hit that appeared both high and late, although the sheer power of the collision didn’t help Pieterse’s cause.

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The hit ignited a scuffle before referee Romain Poite, shouting ‘carton rouge direct’, managed to break it up and restore calm.

Andy Goode described the hit from the 6ft 6ins, 114kg forward as ‘mindless’, although some suggested it wasn’t high and only marginally late. “Heavy ban coming for this mindless act,” wrote the former England fly-half.

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Recently retired Test referee Nigel Owens concurred with the decision. “I never get involved in citings or length of ban conversations. “But this was as obvious a red card you will see and well done Romain, no TMO lengthy conversations. But it has to now be followed by a very, very lengthy ban.”

Former Wales centre Tom Shanklin simply said: “See ya next year”.

Journalist Paul Eddison wrote: “No need for a TMO here. Absolutely no idea what Ryno Pieterse was thinking but one of the most stupid things I’ve seen on a rugby pitch. Fingers crossed that Lucu is ok.”

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Pieterse is a former Bulls forward who signed for Castres last year. It looks like he will now enjoy a significant spell on the sidelines. The match ended in a 23-23 draw.

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