France front-row, Barnabé Massa, appeared before an independent judicial committee on Thursday, 6 July, having received a red card in France’s Pool A match against Wales at the World Rugby U20 Championship 2023 on 4 July. The red card was awarded pursuant to Law 9.20(a) (charging into a ruck).

The independent Disciplinary Committee was chaired by Marcello d’Orey (Portugal), joined by former international coach Frank Hadden (Scotland) and former international player David Croft (Australia).

The player accepted that foul play occurred and that the offending warranted a red card. The Committee noted that the offence carries a mandatory mid-range sanction (six matches), and having considered the mitigating factors reduced the sanction by the maximum mitigation of 50 per cent. The final sanction is three matches as follows:

  • France v England – 9 July, 2023
  • France’s match in round five of the World Rugby U20 Championship – 14 July, 2023
  • Match to be determined*

*The player intends to apply to take part in the World Rugby Coaching Intervention Programme to substitute the final match of the sanction for a coaching intervention aimed at modifying specific techniques and technical issues that contributed to the foul play. Further information can be found here.

The player has the right of appeal within 48 hours of the issuing of the full written decision, which will appear here once published.

Click here to watch the video that explains how rugby’s disciplinary process works.

Visit World Rugby’s dedicated disciplinary process education and information page here.