Home England Hartley “has credit in the bank”

Hartley “has credit in the bank”

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RFU chief executive Ian Ritchie spoke of Dylan Hartley’s “huge contribution” throughout England’s unbeaten year ahead of his disciplinary hearing.

Hartley will face an EPC disciplinary hearing on Wednesday following his red card for a swinging arm to the head of Sean O’Brien.

The England captain came off the bench for his club side Northampton Saints in the Champions Cup clash against Leinster.

A somewhat controversial pick to be England captain at the start of Eddie Jones’ time in charge, given his history of 54 weeks worth of suspensions, Hartley has led the Six Nations champions excellently all year.

Friday’s incident however was a reminder of his former ways, although Ritchie believes that Hartley’s performances this year will meant that any suspension will not affect his standing with England.

“I think Dylan’s got credit in the bank,” Ritchie told BBC Sport.

“I think most people would say it’s been a fantastic year. We’ve had 13 wins out of 13 and Dylan has made a huge contribution and he should be allowed to continue that.

“Obviously it’s disappointing when he gets sent off but we’ll wait and see what happens.

“You view all these things in perspective and in perspective one looks at the totality of what he’s done and what’s happened over the years and I think we should be supportive of that. Ultimately we’ll see what happens – I’m not going to talk about the disciplinary process as you know.

“If he’s eligible for selection it’s ultimately a matter for Eddie, but we should recognise and support all that Dylan has done in the last 12 months. It is primarily a matter for Eddie and if you look back over it, Eddie’s judgement has been really good. We should recognise that and I’m sure we will.”

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  1. Thug!!! Said it long time ago he will go back to his old ways!!! You can take the Ape out of the bush but you will never be able to take the bush out of the ape.

  2. @Jacques:

    You mean like Schalk, Bakkies or Bismark? Would never have dropped them in their prime no matter their almost weekly cards…

  3. @bryce_in_oz: Not even close the same Bryce, this guys is a thug and even he knows it.

    Eddie did great with him this year, but the problem any coach has with players like this is when they start to be great it tend to go to their heads again.

    Eddie is a great manager of players but a thug is a thug is a thug.I bet on it this is the start of plenty more red cards for this chap

    Let’s look at his great record…

    :: April 2007 – banned for 26 weeks after being cited for eye-gouging Wasps forwards James Haskell and Johnny O’Connor.

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    :: March 2012 – received an eight-week suspension after being cited for biting the finger of Ireland back row Stephen Ferris while playing for England in a Six Nations game.

    :: December 2012 – banned for two weeks after being cited for punching Ulster hooker Rory Best during a Heineken Cup match.

    :: May 2013 – sent off for verbally abusing referee Wayne Barnes during the Premiership final against Leicester at Twickenham. Received an 11-week suspension that prevented him from taking his place on the British and Irish Lions tour to Australia.

    :: December 2014 – sent off for elbowing Leicester centre Matt Smith in the face. Banned for three weeks.

    :: May 2015 – banned for four weeks after head-butting Saracens’ Jamie George in Northampton’s 29-24 Aviva Premiership semi-final defeat to Saracens. As a direct consequence, England ruled Hartley out of their World Cup plans.

    :: December 2016 – sent off for striking Leinster flanker Sean O’Brien with a swinging arm. Suspended for six weeks.

    In total he was suspended for 60 weeks

    DOes not even come close to Bakkies, Schalla or Bismarck and most of Bakkies cards were as he was a marked man but this thug is doing it all by himself

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