Andrew Hore suspended for 5 weeks

Andrew Hore has been banned for 5 weeks for his swinging arm tackle on Bradley Davies at the start of Wales’ match against New Zealand at the weekend.

Here is the incident:

The statement read as follows:

The Judicial Officer held that the act of foul play was inherently dangerous, being a deliberate swinging of the arm, delivered with significant force, causing serious injury to the victim player, Bradley Davies, who was unsighted. However, the Judicial Officer found that the player had not intended to make contact with the victim player’s head.

In categorising the seriousness of the offence the Judicial Officer held that it was worthy of a top end entry point under the IRB’s sanctions table, and that the entry point should be 8 weeks. The Judicial Officer held that there were no aggravating factors. The Judicial Officer acknowledged the mitigating factors of acceptance of guilt by the player, his genuine remorse, as evidenced by his daily contact with the injured player, his exemplary disciplinary record, and his conduct throughout the hearing and imposed a suspension of 5 weeks.

The Judicial Officer heard submissions in detail as to when the suspension should end given that the player was entering the close season. The Judicial Officer received unreserved assurances from Ian Foster, Assistant Coach, New Zealand, the player and his legal representative that the pre-season matches to be played by the Highlanders during the weekends of 1st, 8th and 15th February all had significant and meaningful consequences for the player in accordance with IRB Regulation 17.

The player is accordingly suspended up to and including Sunday 24 February 2013, and has the right of appeal.

Do you think this is a fair sanction for the offence?

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33 comments on “Andrew Hore suspended for 5 weeks

  1. C’mon guys lets not go OTT. We’ve all been there. You’re minding your own business when you accidentally with no intent smash a guy in the back of the head sending him to hospital.

    Yes this up there with the Blackadder school of excuses like “he accidentally cut his head off whilst shaving”…

  2. Pathetic really .Do it in the pub then you would be on a GBH charge Amathus let alone a ban .

    Sends out a bad message not that I expect to see Hore in an All Black shirt again.He needs to disappear into the Outback with Keith Murdoch,

  3. The chap who handed out the verdict doesn’t appear to have any international rugby playing experience….. No mention of any rugby experience on his CV.

    Begs the question..

    • They bring in legal people, not rugby people. They want to remove bias. In executing his verdict, he would be looking at the letter of the law and finding the most appropriate ban based on his interpretation of the rule that he’s been told to look at. He will have said that there’s no solid conclusion in his intent to injure – therefore 8 weeks maximum. Proving intent is difficult. He will have called a cheapshot, looked at the IRB’s rules on mitigating factors and given 8 weeks with 3 off for remorse and good record. Often it’s 1/2 time for those factors.

      • wookie, a genuine rugby man would have pointed out that this idea that pre-season games were “meaningful” and can be treated, for the purposes of the ban, the same as league matches, is a load of rubbish. He’s been duped there.

        Also, saying sorry/remorse, why is that even a factor? That’s like schoolyard politics – every kid knows that if they say sorry it’ll be a less severe punishment, it doesn’t make their apology any more genuine.

        • They’re all concepts with legal precedence. While you might say that preseason means anything, there is still a reasonably weighted argument that his inability to take part in preseason will make him less prepared for the season. okay, I agree, it’s bollocks, but there would be precedent to sue for treating his ban differently.

          As for the remorse, there’s a big difference between saying sorry for something and saying you didn’t do anything wrong and there’s precedent in the laws of the world as well as the laws of rugby that if someone admits they did something wrong and apologise for it, they’re better than people who think they can get away with it or thought what they did should be considered okay. That said, in most cases, it’s pretty difficult with all the evidence to deny that you did anything wrong.

          • wookie, I understand what you mean more clearly now – not sure if you work in law but I see your point about this all having a legal basis to ensure that if challenged it can all be defended.

            That’s a bit of a weird concept in itself though and I think is just a bit of an attempt to professionalise, to give an air of competence to, a shabby process. If this was truly legal then the sport would be in a right mess – punching someone upside the head would have you in the dock, not arguing about why your punishment should include certain sorts of games. It’s a sad fact that although Hore admitted it he was still only willing to be punished to the limit of whatever he could get away with (so there is no real remorse there, no willingness to take it on the chin for what he did), hence the need for the IRB to pussyfoot around for fear of upsetting his All Black appointed lawyers. Depressing.

  4. Take out the result of his actions and I think you’ve got a reasonably accurate ban.

    It is important to remember that people are judged based on the act, not the result. Yes it was a dirty cheapshot but if Davies had just gotten up after it people would have been suggesting that 8 weeks is too long. He comes in, sees someone in the way and takes a shot at him. Unfortunately for him and Davies, he caught more than he probably intended to and Davies was sparked out.

    That said, there are some serious inconsitencies in bans that are handed out. Manu Tuilagi face to face with Ashton a couple of years ago (after Ashton started the fight) got a 15 week (I think) ban. Mark Cueto got 13 weeks for his hand being in the eye area, but Eben Etzebeth got off having rubbed his hand all over Laidlaw’s (and Youngs’ at the weekend) eyes. And we all remember Schalk Burger’s 8 week ban for ‘accidentally’ putting a finger in Fitzgerald’s eye socket and wriggling it around.

    More consistency I think is required.

    • Yes, more consistency, for example Bradley himself is fuming as he had a longer ban last year for his tip tackle in the Ireland game.

      Also what we are sick off is the leniency that appears to be based on SH vs NH – 1 week for Thomson, 5 weeks for Hore, yet all of your examples of long bans are for NH players.

      The IRB has somehow become beholden to the SH teams – fiddling with world cup formats and rules (not playing rules, off field ones) to suit them, worrying about where in their season it is, not ours, etc.

  5. Wonder where more revenue comes from for the IRB. NH or SH. My bet would be the NH. Might be time for a bit of NH flexing of muscles. Let the RFU lead the way as everyone hates us anyway!

    • Well, to be fair, there is already disproportional representation at the IRB for the Northern Hemisphere. Each of the home nations gets 2 votes on any motion passed (and Canada for some reason). It’s all a question of whether they can put up with the complaining.

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