LONDON, 1 Nov – Tomás Lavanini (Argentina) has been suspended for one week for charging into a ruck or maul contrary to Law 10.4(h).

Following a review of all camera angles, Lavanini was cited by independent Citing Commissioner Steve Hinds (New Zealand) under Law 10.4(h) for charging into a ruck or maul in the Rugby World Cup 2015 bronze final against South Africa at The Stadium, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on 30 October.

On 25 August, 2009 the then-IRB Rugby Committee issued a Law Ruling to all unions clarifying that “the bind onto another player when joining the ruck must either precede or be simultaneous with contact with any other part of the body including the shoulder of the joining player.”
Lavanini denied committing an act of foul play.

Having conducted a detailed review of all the available evidence, including all camera angles and additional evidence, including from the player and submissions from his legal representative Chris Smith, the Judicial Officer Terry Willis (Australia) upheld the citing on the basis that the player had committed an act of foul play contrary to Law 10.4(h).

With respect to the sanction, the Judicial Officer deemed the act of foul play was low-end which carries an entry point of two weeks. The Judicial Officer considered that there were no aggravating factors. He then took into account mitigating factors including the player’s remorse, good character, relatively clean record and conduct prior to and at the hearing and reduced the suspension to a period of one week.

The suspension takes effect immediately and will be served during Argentina’s match against Barbarian FC at Twickenham on 21 November, 2015.

He is free to resume playing on Monday, 23 November, 2015.

The player has 48 hours in which to appeal from receipt of the written decision.