Scotland centre Hannah Smith given four-week suspension for dangerous tackle

Scotland centre Hannah Smith has been banned for four weeks for a dangerous tackle in the win over Japan.

Thursday, 25th November 2021, 8:16 pm
Hannah Smith in action for Scotland against Japan at the DAM Health Stadium. (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)

The player denied that she had committed an act of foul play worthy of a red card but an independent judicial committee thought otherwise and the citing was upheld.

It is not yet clear when the suspension will be applied but the concern will be whether Smith is available for Scotland for the Final Qualification Tournament for the Rugby World Cup which takes place from February 18-24 in Dubai.

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Scotland beat Japan 36-12 in Edinburgh earlier this month in a match in which Smith had to come off injured.

The committee applied World Rugby’s mandatory minimum mid-range entry point for foul play resulting in contact with the head and determined that the offence warranted a six-week suspension.

However, having acknowledged mitigating factors including Smith’s exemplary disciplinary record and conduct at the hearing, the committee reduced the ban to four weeks.

The matches in which the suspension will apply will be confirmed once the Watsonians player’s upcoming schedule is provided to the disciplinary committee.

Smith can apply to take part in a ‘Coaching Intervention Programme’ to substitute the final match of her suspension. The programme is aimed at modifying specific techniques and technical issues that contributed to the foul play.

She also has the right of appeal within 48 hours of the issuing of the full written decision.

The independent disciplinary committee comprised chair Jennifer Donovan (Ireland), former international referee Juan Pablo Spirandelli (Argentina) and former international John Langford (Australia). They considered all the available evidence, including multiple broadcast angles and submissions from Smith and her representative.

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