Nine-week ban for Wales U20 lock

Wales U20 lock Adam Beard has been banned for nine weeks after being found guilty of making contact with the eye or eye area on Tuesday.

The citing arose from their U20 World Championship clash with Ireland.

He misses the rest of the competition and has been ruled out of opening weeks of PRO12 season. Beard is available for selection from September 11.

The player appeared at a hearing before independent Judicial Officer Mike Hamlin (England) on 9 June, 2016.

The player denied the act of foul play. The Judicial Officer heard evidence from Kelvin Brown of Ireland and reviewed the video footage in addition to hearing from Beard and his representatives.

The Judicial Officer determined that the player had committed an act of foul play being unlawful contact with the Irish player’s right eye. The player had not intentionally or deliberately targeted the eye of the Irish player however the Judicial Officer found the contact to be reckless. 

The Judicial Officer determined this was low-end offending which carries an entry point of 12 weeks. The Judicial Officer aggravated the entry point of 12 weeks in accordance with the World Rugby Memorandum by a further week. Mitigating factors were found to be present which justified a reduction in the sanction from 13 weeks to nine weeks.

In the context of the U20 Championship this equates to four matches, the player is therefore suspended for the remainder of the tournament. The remaining five weeks suspension will be served during the period from 11 August to 10 September inclusive.

The player has 48 hours to appeal the decision.