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World Rugby statement: Andrew Porter citing complaint dismissed

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

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Referee Wayne Barnes has had his decision to only yellow card Andrew Porter last Saturday in Wellington vindicated as the citing complaint brought against the Ireland prop has been dismissed for failing the red card threshold. Numerous commentators felt that the loosehead should have been sent off for his head-on-head collision which left Brodie Retallick with a fractured cheekbone.

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However, unlike fellow prop Angus Ta’avao who was red-carded the previous week when the All Blacks lost the second Test to Ireland, a decision that resulted in a three-week ban for the Kiwi front-rower, Barnes believed the foul play involving Porter in the third Test only merited a ten-minute sin bin – a verdict that has now been backed up by the outcome of a judicial hearing. 

A World Rugby statement read: “A citing complaint against Ireland prop Andrew Porter for an act of foul play has been dismissed by an independent judicial committee on Tuesday. Porter was cited for an act of foul play contrary to law 9.13 (a player must not tackle an opponent early, late or dangerously) in Ireland’s final test match against New Zealand on July 16. 

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“The independent committee, chaired by Adam Casselden (Australia) and joined by former international player Stefan Terblanche (South Africa) and former international coach Frank Hadden (Scotland), heard the case and considered all the available evidence, including multiple broadcast angles and submissions from the player and his legal representative, Aaron Lloyd.

“The player admitted that he committed an act of foul play but maintained that the red card threshold had not been met and that the yellow card issued at the time by the match officials was correct in the circumstances.

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“Having considered all the evidence, the independent committee applied World Rugby’s head contact process and agreed with the match officials’ on-field decision that the player’s act of foul play for a breach of law 9.13 did not meet the red card threshold due to the absorbing nature of the tackle. On that basis, the independent committee deemed the act of foul play did not merit further sanction, and the citing complaint was dismissed.”

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