Jared Payne red card decision
Payne suspended for two weeks
The Ulster Rugby full back, Jared Payne (No 15), has been suspended for two (2) weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing in Dublin today (Wednesday, 9 April 2014) arising from the Heineken Cup quarter-final match against Saracens at Ravenhill Stadium on Saturday, 5 April.
Payne was shown a red card by referee, Jerome Garces (France), in the 5th minute of the match for an alleged dangerous charge on the Saracens full back, Alex Goode, in contravention of Law 10.4(i)
Law 10.4(i) Tackling, tapping, pushing or pulling an opponent jumping for the ball in open play
Under the IRB Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4(i) carries the following sanction entry points: Low End: 3 weeks; Mid-Range: 6 weeks; Top End: 12 to 52 weeks.
The independent Judicial Officer, Simon Thomas (Wales), heard evidence and submissions from Payne, Ulster Rugby Director of Rugby, David Humphreys, and Team Manager, David Millar, as well as from ERC Disciplinary Officer, Roger O’Connor.
In upholding the red card decision, the Judicial Officer determined that Payne had committed a reckless act and concluded that the offence was at the low end of the IRB sanctions for offences of this nature and selected three (3) weeks as the appropriate entry point.
As there were no aggravating factors, and taking into account the player’s clean disciplinary record and his exemplary conduct at the hearing, the Judicial Officer reduced the sanction by the maximum of one (1) week and imposed a suspension of two (2) weeks. He commented that the case had been a particularly challenging one and conveyed his thanks to the Ulster Rugby representatives for the quality of their defence during the hearing.
Payne is free to play on Monday, 21 April.
(i) Red Cards
a) The case of any player sent off in Heineken Cup or Amlin Challenge Cup games shall be adjudicated by an independent Judicial Officer as soon as is practicable.
b) Until the hearing the player is ineligible to play in any tournament.
(ii) Disciplinary Hearing
a) The independent Judicial Officer is chosen by the chairman of the independent Disciplinary Panel, Professor Lorne Crerar.
b) ERC’s Disciplinary Officer, Roger O’Connor, presents the case against the player.
c) In a red card hearing, the burden is on the player to prove, on the balance of probabilities, that the referee’s decision to show him a red card was wrong.
d) If the referee’s decision to show the player a red card is upheld, the independent Judicial Officer will be required to consider the appropriate sanction. Under the IRB’s sanctioning regime, which ERC is obliged to follow, the Judicial Officer will first assess the seriousness of the player’s actions and determine which of the three stipulated entry points (lower end, mid range and top end) is the most appropriate.
e) The Judicial Officer will determine the appropriate entry point based on his/her assessment of a number of particular characteristics of the player’s actions, including whether or not they were intentional, whether or not they caused any injuries and whether or not they had any effect on the relevant match.
f) After deciding the entry point, the Judicial Officer will then consider whether the suspension should be increased from the entry point to take account of certain specified aggravating factors, such as a poor disciplinary record or the need for deterrence, and/or decreased from the entry point to take account of certain specified mitigating actions, such as a guilty plea, a good disciplinary record, the player’s conduct at the hearing and expressions of remorse.
g) A suspension is a blanket ban from playing rugby union anywhere in the world.
h) Both parties to the hearing (ERC and the player) have the right to appeal decisions of the independent Disciplinary Hearing. Appeals must be lodged within three (3) working days of receiving the full written decision of the Judicial Officer.
i) The full written decision of the Judicial Officer will be available on http://www.ercrugby.com/eng/discipline/news when the disciplinary process is complete
j) For IRB Sanctions for Foul Play, found at Appendix 1 to IRB Regulation 17, please go to www.irb.com