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Stormers lock Adre Smith citing for an alleged bite versus Munster

By Sam Smith
(Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

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The Stormers’ difficult first European tour as one of the new franchises in the United Rugby Championship took a turn for the worse on Tuesday evening when it was decided that lock Adre Smith has a case to answer about an allegation that he bit Munster’s Niall Scannell last Saturday in Limerick. 

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Life in the revamped 16-team tournament got off to a bum note in Italy for the Stormers on September 25 as they were beaten 22-18 in Treviso, and they suffered a second defeat in Ireland last weekend when losing to Munster 34-18. 

Now set to face Edinburgh in Scotland this coming Saturday, they are poised to do so without the services of the 24-year-old Smith who started out at the Bulls and played for the Griquas before linking up with the Stormers for their debut URC trip. 

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A Tuesday night URC statement read: “A disciplinary committee will meet on Thursday to consider the citing complaint against Adre Smith (No4) of DHL Stormers which occurred against Munster on Saturday.

“The incident occurred in the 45th minute of the URC round two fixture at Thomond Park. The citing commissioner in charge has made a complaint about an alleged act of foul play against an opponent, Niall Scannell (No2).

“The player has been cited under law 9.12 – A player must not physically or verbally abuse anyone. Physical abuse includes but is not limited to biting, punching, contact with the eye or eye area, striking with any part of the arm (including stiff-arm tackles), shoulder, head or knee(s), stamping, trampling, tripping or kicking. The player will face a disciplinary panel via videoconference. The panel will comprise Kathrine Mackie (chair), Iain Leslie (both Scotland) and Janet Gedrych (Wales).”

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During a TMO review of the incident during the match, Munster captain Peter O’Mahony could be heard telling referee Andrew Brace: “Yeah, 100 per cent he [Scannell] has got a full-on bite mark.” Smith could be seen in the footage with his head between Scannell’s legs and his face pressed against the hooker’s upper thigh, but the referee took the matter no further on the night. “If there’s anything clear the citing officer will deal with it,” said the referee before the game resumed.

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