Home Discliplinary actions Skelton and Latu gets off lightly

Skelton and Latu gets off lightly

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If one look at what happened earlier in the season with the likes of Frans Steyn then you realize that to understand SANZAR disciplinary procedures and action taken against players is the same as to get your mind around evolution.

By: Jacques Nortier

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Will Skelton and Silatolu Latu have both been cited for a dangerous tip tackle in the match between the Waratahs and the Crusaders, and as a result have been suspended for two and four weeks respectively.
In his finding, Stelzner ruled the following: Skelton

“As the Judicial Officer, I considered all the evidence before me including the video footage, additional video provided by the Waratahs, Citing Commissioner’s report, medical information for the Crusaders’ player, Sam Whitelock, who was involved in the incident and the submissions made for the player by his legal representatives, Anthony Black SC and Bruce Hodgkinson.

“After taking all relevant facts into consideration, I found the incident to have a lower end entry point for breaching of 10.4 (j) Lifting Tackle which stipulates a four-week suspension.

“Mitigating factors included the fact that the player admitted his contravention of the law, his youthfulness and clean disciplinary record and the character references supplied on his behalf.

“This resulted in the aforesaid period of four weeks being reduced by two weeks. A deterrent of two weeks was however added for this type of offending as it is an action that has sought to be eliminated from the game.

In his finding, Stelzner ruled the following: Skelton

“Latu played a more dominant role in the tackle when compared to the actions of his teammate, Will Skelton, who received a suspension of two weeks.

“The player’s playing schedule is such that there is a significant chance of the Waratahs being involved in the Super Rugby Qualifier and/or Semi-Finals. A four-week suspension will in all probability result in his missing the next four matches of the competition. This is a meaningful sanction.

“The player is accordingly found to have contravened Law 10.4 (j) and is suspended up to and including Saturday 20 June 2015.”

“After taking all relevant facts into consideration, I found the incident to have a lower end entry point for breaching of 10.4 (j) Lifting Tackle which stipulates a four-week suspension.

“Mitigating factors which were taken into account included the player’s clean record, his relative youthfulness and the good character references supplied on his behalf. This resulted in the sanction being reduced by two weeks.

“Two offending players, Skelton and Silatolu Latu, were involved in the incident. Latu played a more active role in the lifting and twisting of their opponent, Sam Whitelock, contributing more significantly to the end result than Skelton. Skelton nevertheless also lifted and twisted Whitelock in the tackle, which is why he too was found to have breached the applicable Law.

“Given the lesser extent of his involvement however, the sanction in the case of Skelton did not in my view warrant an increase from the entry level sanction to serve as a deterrent. He was unaware of the actions of his fellow player, Silatolu Latu, and although he dropped his opponent after he had lifted and turned him, it appeared that Latu was the player who had continued with the tip tackle causing their opponent to land in the manner in which he ultimately did.

“The player was found to have contravened Law 10.4 (j) and is suspended up to and including Saturday 6 June 2015.”

A few questions pop in my head with these hearings:

1. Firstly will the TMO be punish as well as he was the one that recommended only Latu was at fault and let the referee to believe that Skelton had nothing to do with it?

2. Secondly what about the punch from Latu after the tackle?

3. Thirdly does SANZAR allow now that players can go in the backs of players as Skelton did?

4. Fourthly are SANZAR now also allowing players to dive into a player on the ground which Skelton did? We need to understand that this is exactly why Springbok Bakkies Botha was suspended a few years ago.

To say that supporters have no confidence in SANZAR at all is an understatement as it seems that different rules are applying to different players and the time that people calls this sour grapes is long gone as it happens all over in rugby today.

The seriousness of this was seen when McCaw told the referee on the field if he is not going to sort out the off the ball incidents that they will take matter in there own hands.

The only question remaining now is if SANZAR will intervene like they did with Frans Steyns hearing to show that they can uphold justice in our systems that is suppose to not just protect our players but to make the game fair both ways does not matter which player or team are involved.

 

 

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5 COMMENTS

  1. Don’t get so worked up Jacques, I am just waiting for SANZAR to appeal their own judicial process like they did with Frans Steyn, then everything will turn out fine.

    And if you believe that, you will believe anything.

  2. @Craven:

    And guess what… unlike the all accepting soft-cocks at the Sharks… the Waratahs will be appealing both the above sentences… cannot see it making any difference… very lucky for their opponents they wont be having to face the tank that is Colin Skelton…

  3. @bryce_in_oz:

    Moving these Tongans/Fijians over to the land of boef and they just seem to continue growing on top of their staples!

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