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Jersey Red handed match ban over "reckless" move

Jersey Red handed match ban over

Wednesday 29 January 2020

Jersey Red handed match ban over "reckless" move


A Jersey Reds player has been banned for three matches after he ‘shouldered’ an opponent from Yorkshire Carnegie in the head during a match last week.

Jersey forward Max Argyle was disciplined for the ‘dangerous play’ following a decision by the governing body for rugby union in England.

As the referee didn’t see the incident, the matter was referred to a Rugby Football Union (RFU) panel to deal with. 

The panel heard that during a 'ruck,' Mr Argyle’s “shoulder makes forceful contact with the head and shoulder” of an opponent.

This caused the Yorkshire player to kneel “on the ground feeling his face” and “after about ten seconds he is able to get up and re-join the match”.

The Yorkshire Carnegie player was not injured by the contact and the hearing accepted that Mr Argyle did not intend to hit him in the head or neck, but rather he was aiming for the shoulder area.

In defending their forward, Jersey Reds put forward the following points:  

  • the contact was “unintentional” and “the result of poor decision making”;
  • it “was a clumsy rather than reckless act”;
  • it “could be considered to be at the lower end of the mid-range”;
  • it was intended to be “shoulder to shoulder”;
  • “there was no provocation or retaliation involved”;
  • it didn’t cause the player any injury and only affected him “for a very short period of time”;
  • it “had no impact on the match”;
  • Mr Argyle made contact with Yorkshire Carnegie “to apologise and ask after the player’s wellbeing”;
  • in his seven-year professional rugby career, Mr Argyle “has only received two previous yellow cards”;
  • Mr Argyle immediately admitted the action and Jersey Reds progressed the matter promptly.

Making their finding, the panel stated: “Whilst we are prepared to accept that [Mr Argyle] did not aim for the head, his actions were reckless and carried with them the risk of the very thing that happened. [The Yorkshire player] could have been seriously injured as a result. We do not find that [Mr Argyle] acted with the intent of making contact with the head area and we accept that [he] is remorseful… We also accept that [he] has an otherwise good disciplinary record and is in other ways a credit to his team.”

As a punishment for the offence, Mr Argyle was handed a three-match ban, meaning he’ll sit out for the Reds’ upcoming fixtures against the Bedford Blues, the Ealing Trailfinders and the Doncaster Knights.

However, Mr Argyle will be back on the pitch for the Cup Quarter-Final on 22 February.

Pictured top: The Jersey Reds Stade Santander stadium. (Richard Chapman)

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