Wednesday, 27 February 2013


Cian Healy's successful appeal against his ban for stamping on Dan Cole's leg makes a mockery of the whole disciplinary process.

He has, effectively, received a one match international ban for a gratuitous stamp that could have broken a fellow player's ankle.

The original disciplinary panel attempted to ensure that Healy missed at least 2 Six Nations matches by extending Healy's 3 week ban over 4 weeks but their attempt to manipulate the regulations was in itself a breach of their powers - hence Healy's availability to play France next up.

It strikes me that there is a straightforward solution. If a chargeable offence is committed playing international rugby, then any ban should apply to only international rugby - 3 international matches would have, rightly, ruled Healy out the rest of the Six Nations but would have allowed him to play for his club/province (who arguably should not suffer from offences committed when not on their watch). Likewise any ban suffered playing club rugby should not necessarily apply to international rugby.


1 comment:

Barney Davis said...

While it is a miscarriage of justice that Healy has been able to get away with this offense, I do not agree that offenses should only apply to the level committed on.

If a player does something like this at club level, then his ban should also prevent him representing his country as well. If he has been denied the right to represent his club due to a disciplinary action, then why should a player still be allowed the greater honor of representing his country?

However, I do understand your point that an international ban should not be eaten by the club, although he is the club's player and they are partly responsible for his actions as well. If a player cannot be trusted to behave, as much as can be done on a rugby pitch, then they should not invest time and money on him.

A more fair option, perhaps, would be for the disciplinary committee to expressly determine which matches a player be banned from. In this case, the committee would specifically indicate the Ireland v. France match as the one Healy will be banned from, whereas in other situations he would be banned from club level instead, in such cases as a serious enough offense or a prolonged period without international opportunity.