LONDON, 7 Oct – Faifili Levave (Samoa) was cited for an act of foul play contrary to Law 10.4(f) (playing an opponent without the ball). While the citing was upheld, the Judicial Officer determined that due to exceptional circumstances no further sanction should be imposed and therefore the player is free to play in Samoa’s final Pool B match against Scotland on 10 October.
Following a review of video footage, Levave was cited by independent Citing Commissioner Yves Thieffine (France) under Law 10.4(f) for tackling a player without the ball during the 15th minute of Samoa’s Rugby World Cup 2015 Pool B match against Japan at Stadium MK on 3 October.
Levave denied the act of foul play. Having conducted a detailed review of all the available evidence, including all camera angles, evidence from the player and submissions from his legal representatives, the Judicial Officer Antony Davies (England) upheld the citing on the basis that the player had committed the act of foul play.
With respect to the sanction, the Judicial Officer determined that the offence was low-end, which has an entry point of two weeks. However, taking into account off-field mitigating factors including his impeccable conduct during the hearing, good character and clean disciplinary record over a long career and the absence of any aggravating factors, the Judicial Officer decided that any further sanction beyond the on field yellow card would be wholly disproportionate.
The player is free to play in Samoa’s final Pool B match against Scotland on 10 October.
The player has 48 hours in which to appeal from receipt of the written decision.