Paul Gabrillagues (France) has successfully appealed the six-week sanction handed down for foul play (contrary to Law 9.20) in the test match between France and Scotland in Nice on Saturday, 17 August, 2019.
The appeal was heard in London on 27 August by an independent Appeal Committee comprising Christopher Quinlan QC (Chair), Adam Casselden SC (Australia) and David Croft (former Australia player).
Having considered all the evidence and submissions by the player and his representative, the Appeal Committee determined that the act of foul play contrary to Law 9.20 merited a mid-range entry point, which has a starting point of six weeks.
The Appeal Committee found that there were no aggravating factors, but in light of his admission, the fact the Appeal Committee accepted his account of the incident and other relevant features of mitigation, the Committee reduced the suspension to three weeks.
Gabrillagues is presently in the France squad of 31 provisionally named for Rugby World Cup 2019. Applying World Rugby Regulation 17.1.1.(b), 17.9.9, 17.9.10 and, on the basis of the evidence, the period of three weeks will operate across the following matches:
- Scotland v France on 24 August, 2019 – for which he was suspended and did not play in, when otherwise he would have done, and therefore it counts as one match for the purposes of that suspension;
- France v Italy on 30 August, 2019; and
- France v Argentina on 21 September, 2019 (France’s first RWC 2019 match).
Therefore, the player is suspended until after France’s first Rugby World Cup 2019 match against Argentina on 21 September, 2019.
The full written decision will be published here when available.