All Blacks' Thomson gets one-week stamping ban
LONDON (AFP) –
New Zealand back-row forward Adam Thomson was banned for one week by the International Rugby Board (IRB) after being found guilty of stamping on Scotland’s Alasdair Strokosch last weekend.
The suspension, which Thomson can appeal, means he will miss this Saturday’s Test against Italy in Rome but will be free to play in the remaining matches of the world champions’ European tour, against Wales in Cardiff on November 24 and England at Twickenham on December 1.
Many observers, including Scotland coach Andy Robinson, thought Thomson was fortunate to escape with only a yellow card after his boot made contact with the head of loose forward Strokosch during the All Blacks’ 51-22 victory at Murrayfield on Sunday.
Thomson then faced further action after being cited by Irish citing commissioner Murray Whyte.
However, IRB independent judicial officer Jean-Noel Couraud of France, while upholding the citing at a hearing in London on Wednesday, said in a statement that after viewing various angles of the incident and listening to representations from Thomson and on the player’s behalf, he deemed the offence to be “at the lower end of the scale of IRB sanctions”.
Accordingly, from a low entry point of two weeks, Couraud allowed one week of mitigation, “taking into account, in particular, the player’s (Thomson’s) conduct at the hearing.”
Couraud thus imposed a ban of one week with Thomson free to resume playing on November 19.