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Springboks question Wiese hearing delay compared to Barrett

By Liam Heagney

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Springboks boss Jacques Nienaber has questioned why there was a delay in the holding of the disciplinary hearing for his cited back-rower Jasper Wiese, unlike some weeks ago when the red-carded All Blacks full-back Jordie Barrett had his case heard on a Monday in Australia. The South Africans were under the impression that any hearing arising from last Saturday’s defeat to the Wallabies would take place by 17:00 on Monday. 

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This was what happened earlier this September when Barrett was red-carded during the All Blacks’ win over Australia in Perth. His hearing took place on a Monday evening, a top-of-the-week timing that ensured the New Zealander had time to go training with his team prior to the following weekend’s XV selection versus Argentina. 

However, the situation unfolded differently this week for Wiese following his citing for a ruck clear-out on Samu Kerevi. He was yellow-carded at the time by referee Matthew Carley for the foul play but it was later decided by the citing commissioner that the offence met the red card threshold for a citing.

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How the Springboks can bounce back this weekend against the All Blacks
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All the various time cut-off points for making the citing were met by the officials, but the Springboks were left unhappy that the delay in holding the hearing meant that Wiese – after getting cleared of the charge – wasn’t able to figure in the team selection plans to face the All Blacks in Townsville.

Nienaber had announced his XV at 19:00 on Tuesday in Australia, an unveiling that came too soon for Wiese who only had his name cleared later that night which was too late for him to vie for selection in a team where he was chosen as a back-rower replacement in recent weeks. 

With Wiese’s availability uncertain, Nienaber made two changes to his starting XV and reconfigured the Springboks bench, the omission of Wiese resulting in a five forwards/three backs split getting selected rather than the usual six/two balance. “Jasper is only having his hearing tonight [Tuesday]. According to the timeline, it should have happened yesterday [Monday], but for reasons not in our control it could only happen tonight so he wasn’t up for selection,” rued Nienaber at a media briefing prior to the Wiese hearing result.

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“He was cited within the correct time. The issue was the timeline. The judicial process timeline normally comes out on a Friday before the Test match so let’s say listen if there is a citing, it must happen before this time and the team must be notified before this time. If you plead guilty or not it must happen before this time, and then the hearing must happen before this time, so there is a whole timeframe that should be met. 

“Everything happened according to the timeframe as they put out in that process on Friday except unlike with the Barrett incident – he got his hearing on the Monday at 5 o’clock, 17:00 hours. Our hearing should have been Monday 17:00 so that if the player then gets found not guilty he is still up for selection for Saturday but for some reason the people who sit in the judicial committee weren’t available at 17:00 on Monday so the hearing only happens today [Tuesday]. 

“We have got one (more) training before we play the Test match, one training and then a captain’s practice, so it just made it impossible for us to select Jasper. I’m not 100 per cent sure why the timelines weren’t met (for the Springboks) and it was met when they had the same incident two weeks ago when Australia played against New Zealand. I’m sure Sanzaar will come back to us on that.”

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Springboks question Wiese hearing delay compared to Barrett

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