New Zealand captain Richie McCaw has put the boot into the judicial systems that operates in international rugby, following the four-week ban handed down to All Black teammate Kevin Mealamu.
Mealamu, who is considering an appeal, was handed a reduced ban for his act of stupidly – head-butting England captain Lewis Moody in the Test at Twickenham last Saturday.
Judicial officer Lorne Crerar, ruling on the incident that was clearly visible on television replays, upheld the citing complaint against the All Black hooker for an act contrary to Law 10(4)(a). He determined that it was an intentional act of foul play.
However, he was lenient when handing out punishment – reducing the ‘mid range’ ban of eight weeks to just four, in the absence of aggravating factors together with compelling mitigating factors including the player’s conduct at the hearing and his exemplary disciplinary record.
Mealamu, who has 48 hours to appeal the verdict, will not play again on New Zealand’s year-end tour if the ban stands.
However, McCaw felt strongly about what he term the “inconsistency of rugby’s judicial system” after England hooker Dylan Hartley escaped disciplinary action.
Hartley crashed into McCaw with a forearm challenge in the second half of the All Blacks’ 26-16 victory, but citing commissioner John West decided to take no further action.
“It’s a little surprising. That’s the biggest frustration as a player – the inconsistency,” McCaw told the media.
“I don’t like to be bitching and moaning about it – that’s not the way I am – but all players would like to see a level of consistency.
“With that incident I’m surprised he wasn’t up.
“I don’t know whether the ref saw it or not but I certainly made it known to him that I’d been hit. I don’t like people to take cheap shots – that annoys me.”
All Blacks lock Brad Thorn saw Hartley career into McCaw and shoved the England hooker to the turf, sparking a melee.
“I think you saw my reaction and Brad’s reaction in the field, what we thought about it. You don’t like those things happening – that’s not the game of rugby,” McCaw added.
“You have to put your faith in the people that make those decisions. He’s obviously decided it wasn’t worthy.”
This article is courtesy of rugby365.comTweet