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Sunday, October 21, 2012

Pieter Dixon's red card after TMO recommendation rules kick to face

Before yesterday’s Currie Cup semifinal, the last time the Natal Sharks and the Blue Bulls met was on a miserably wet day in Durban last month. On that occasion the Sharks ended with 14 players after former Bath stalwart Pieter Dixon was red carded.

Dixon, who spent many years at Western Province and with the Stormers before heading over to the UK to play over 150 matches for Bath, returned to South Africa earlier this year.

The 35 year-old was brought in as the Sharks were missing hookers due to injury and Springbok duty. Dixon has relocated to where he was schooled, and his experience speaks for itself, including a Springbok tour match when they travelled to Argentina and the UK early in his career.

Near the end of the Bulls game he made contact with the head of flanker Arno Botha as the players fell in the wet conditions. Referee Mark Lawrence referred the potential foul play incident to TMO Johann Meuwesen, who had many looks at it and recommended a red card for the kick to the face.

Dixon later faced a disciplinary hearing and after acknowledging that his boot came into contact with Botha's face, stated that it was accidental. He was cleared of any wrongdoing as on the balance of probability, the kick was deemed to be unintentional, and the red card decision was incorrect.

The card was scraped from Dixon's record, and would not be taken into account should he appear in future disciplinary hearings again. As a result, he was free to play their next game.

Unfortunately a week later against Free State, Dixon broke his arm 12 minutes into the match.

This isn't very current news but it was quite a talking point at the time and some of you (especially Bath fans) asked to see it, so below is a short clip of the incident

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Posted in Big Hits & Dirty Play

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