Thursday, March 29, 2012

Hartley dismay at ban verdict

Dylan Hartley is upset at the prospect of missing the rest of the season after being hit with an eight-week ban for biting.

Dylan-Hartley-England-008.jpg (460×276)

The Northampton hooker was banned for eight weeks by an independent Six Nations disciplinary committee on Tuesday, after being cited for biting the finger of flanker Stephen Ferris in England's 30-9 win over Ireland earlier this month.

Hartley had hoped to get the ban reduced but the hearing upheld the initial citing and he will now only play for Saints again this season if they make it to the Aviva Premiership final, which takes place on May 26.  However, the suspension will not run into England's three-Test trip to South Africa in June, so the 26-year-old should, if fit, be part of the squad. Harltey was downbeat after the verdict and expressed his disappointment at the panel's decision.

"I am disappointed by the result and I will wait for the written judgment as to how the panel came to their conclusion,'' he said. "I now have to put it behind me and focus on supporting Saints in training and off the field.''

England forwards coach Graham Rowntree is pleased that the hooker will be available for England's summer Tour of South Africa. "It is unfortunate for Dylan and Northampton, especially as he was in good form during the Six Nations, and he has developed as a player and a leader. However, we are looking forward to him being available for the tour to South Africa," Rowntree said.

63be1c8db6.jpg (524×229)


Post a Comment