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Sunday, January 19, 2014

Ian Evans facing suspension after red card for stamp on Mike McCarthy

Ospreys and Wales lock Ian Evans faces an anxious wait to see what his Six Nations availability will be like after he was cited for a red card for stamping in Friday's Heineken Cup clash against Leinster in Dublin. Leinster won the game 36-3.

Evans has been a key player for Wales in recent times but will likely miss out on at least the first two of their Championship matches after Romain Poite red carded him for stamping on the face of Leinster lock Mike McCarthy, who left the field with blood pouring from his head.

Ospreys backs coach Gruff Rees admitted it might have been reckless, but said that even after multiple TV replays, Evans alleged stamping wasn't clear and obvious.

"It was a big moment, but I'm not sure about it to be honest, like a lot of observers, I think. Perhaps it was a bit reckless, but there were a lot of replays needed to make a decision, which suggests it wasn't that clear and obvious.

"It took five or six times in slow-mo to isolate the incident. I don't know if that's clear and obvious from a red card point of view, and it changes the game.

"You have to be absolutely certain with a red card, and that there were so many replays and there are still so many differing opinions on it suggests that the clips may not have been totally conclusive," he added.

It looked as though a number of players could have been guilty of stamping, but as the one angle shows, Evans' boot seemed to do the most damage. View a short post match studio analysis.

Page: 12View All

Posted at 3:19 pm | 43 comments

Nick Wood red carded after 73 seconds for stamp

Ben Tameifuna and Jamie Mackintosh banned for rucking

James Horwill cleared after stamp on Alun-Wyn Jones

Dimitri Yachvili stamp on Henry Chavancy

Cian Healy banned for three weeks for leg stamp on Dan Cole

Mike McCarthy big hit on Eben Etzebeth

John Hayes suspended for six weeks for stamp on Cian Healy

Posted in Big Hits & Dirty Play

Viewing 43 comments

DanKnapp January 19, 2014 4:18 pm

From first looks, that seems about as innocuous a stamp as is possible. I couldn't see evidence that he was looking down. Certainly if he had made contact with anywhere other than the player's face I don't think we'd have been talking about it as a red card offence.

Don't know the player very well, what's his disciplinary record like? Looks like the sort of offence which might see a reduced ban due to good behaviour.

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matt January 19, 2014 4:22 pm

I'm struggling to see any reasonable argument against the red card. Then again, I don't know the exact wording of the rules, and I imagine that that will be fairly important in an incident like this, does anyone know exactly what is required?

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John January 19, 2014 5:32 pm

I cant see any intent. If u put yourself under a maul then your going to get hurt. Hes clearly trying to bring the maul down illegally and get a show in for his troubles, unfortunate that he takes a couple of boots to the face but he knew he was in the wrong place and theres no clear intent from ian evans.
The referee ruined the game with that decision. And not too sure why the ospreys played with 13 men for so long and making a prop play hooker in contested scrums is reckless and wrong

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themull January 19, 2014 5:36 pm

He found his head with the first and then repeated the actiononce or twice more..if he had have left it at one, he may have been able to plead unintentional but he repeated the stamp..No problem with hard rucking of guys underneath a maul or on the wrong side of a ruck, but stamping is too dangerous..Can easily break bones and cause serious injuries

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jb January 19, 2014 5:59 pm

If Horwill wasn't banned this surely cant result in one... Evans is facing backwards and his view is disrupted by the rest of his team mates joining the the maul. Furthermore he is unbalanced by an opposition player which is exactly how Horwill got out of his stamp to an upturned face.

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xxxwookie January 19, 2014 6:15 pm

McCarthy joins first and strips off the front of the maul as an individual which is legitimate. The maul then runs over him.

If there's one boot to the head, it's possibly an accident as the maul drives over. However, there are too many shots to argue a reasonable defence. It's also not a natural manner for him to be driving forward. Standing on one foot repeatedly sudding someone's head without putting weight into it. Whether he's looking or not, he knows he's stamping. Best option - plead guilty, hope the red card is considered in mitigating circumstances and take a 6 week ban.

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Mastersa January 19, 2014 6:30 pm

Initial footage from one side showed 2 to 3 players shoeing him on the back , side and legs. Got no issue with that when someone gets themselves in a position like that., however the footage from the other side I saw, show 4 attempts 3 hits with the same foot by him to the head of McCarthy. Intentional, deliberate and wreck less. No doubt! Deserved red card for the idiot. I would like to see him in the six nations so am hoping for a Horwell ban.

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redwan_ January 19, 2014 6:46 pm

Deserved the card, deserves a ban. Intent is irrelevant, he stamped on the guys head three times. I wouldnt go as far as the studio guy does and say shoulders down is fair game if you're in the wrong place but if you're driving over and stand on him then no bother. The up/down or backwards motion law shows itself, this was deliberate. I agree with xxxwookie, take the rap.

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DrG January 19, 2014 6:58 pm

Having trampled over many people within a maul situation over a few years of playing, I've never trampled/stepped/stamped on a head or face..

I'm not sure whether I'm just lucky, or maybe it feels different and you adjust quickly?!?!?

Nearly had my face stepped on once when pinned in a ruck... thankfully some quick action from our great Saffa flanker saved my (sort of) good looks!

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Andy C January 19, 2014 7:20 pm

He's not stupid, he knew what he was doing, he knew he was stamping, once maybe by accident but several times, he should be charged for that, I have played for many years and never been stamped on the face, he knew what he was doing and deserves all he gets and more!!

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DrG January 19, 2014 8:25 pm

Actually to add to this, what are the laws on stepping on players (body wise)... Seems more back and forth than tennis! One minute stepping on a player is accepted, the next rucking makes referee's go ape, then next McCarthy is getting trampled by every forward on the team and it's only the face stamp that gets attention...

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Facepalm January 19, 2014 9:04 pm

The stamping laws (if you can call them laws) have always completely boggled me.

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matt January 19, 2014 10:56 pm

There seems to be a lot of buzz words being thrown around, 'intent' 'clear and obvious' etc. I'm wondering if this is the same thing as the often misquoted having to 'wrap' arms in a tackle. I'd like to know exactly what is going on, because there was a very, very similar incident in the Sarries game the next day that got a yellow, apparently because of a lack of clear and obvious something.

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DrG January 20, 2014 12:33 am

I can't say exactly but one of the big things that was floating around in the past is that "intent" has nothing to do with anything... and referee's shouldn't base their decision on a players intent but only on the fact... not sure if the same applies for the citing commissioner and the disciplinary panel etc...

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xxxwookie January 20, 2014 4:13 pm

'intent' is much more a question for the disciplinary panel to ascertain. The citing commissioner is there to ascertain if something may be considered foul play, but I think some of them are just lazier than others.

With regards to stamping and trampling the laws are fairly clear. law 10.4b indicates that players should not stamp on or trample the opposition. There's obvious lee-way, as there is with anything and referees will allow players to use their boot to try to remove players covering the ball and the referee will ping anything they deem excessive with a penalty. However, more direct and obvious attacks, putting weight into it, stamping on sensitive areas like the head/knees/ankles or hands usually draws more interest, particularly towards the cards and bans (think the Cían Healey stamp on Dan Cole's ankle).

I thought the stamp on Barrit in the Connaught match deserved more attention than it got. It was almost certainly in the head area and was reckless and I think warranted a longer look by a disciplinary panel.

The rule that a lot of people have to be aware of here, including Ian Evans is 10.4L - A player shall not retaliate. Even if the opposition is doing something illegal they must not do anything to endanger them

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Breno Brasil January 19, 2014 9:34 pm

I can't see any glory in stepping over someone who's lying down on the ground!

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Tom January 19, 2014 9:38 pm

McCarthy got himself in the wrong place, trying to do something illegal in the game. Evans is pulling the maul, pumping his legs, going backwards, trying to keep the maul moving forward. He tries to step back, there's a body in the way and like in every other game of Rugby where you see someone unsuccessfully pull down a maul, he get's a 'shoe in'. Yes, Evans catches his face but not on purpose and he can't see where he's stamping, he's just giving the illegal player on the floor the 'shoe in' he deserves, like most of his team were with him. He's just the unlucky guy that catches the guy in the head.

If you find yourself in 'that' place, it's your own fault. Don't like how you get treated there, don't get there in the first place.

This is Rugby, not football guys. Our Sport is getting way too soft..

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matt January 19, 2014 10:58 pm

I'm pretty sure you mean 'shoeing', and he was there legally. Even if he wasn't, when you're 'shoe ining' someone you still have to take responsibility for their safety, which Ian Evans completely failed to do.

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Tom January 19, 2014 11:56 pm

Well done for pointing that out. It's a phrase, every one will know what I mean anyway.

He tried to take down a maul, which is illegal. He was on the floor and got stamped on then because he failed at doing it. You can't expect them to stop a maul just because he's on the ground under the maul. It's moving forward, he's going to get stamped on. It's his responsibility to get out of there and not get in other teams way.

I'm not saying he may not deserve a ban. If stamping a guy accidentally in the head deserves a ban then he get should get a ban but he didn't stamp the guy in the head on purpose. He deserved a stamp. He shouldn't have been there.

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xxxwookie January 20, 2014 12:05 am

He wasn't in the wrong place illegally - like I say, he binds straight on the ball carrier, in the process of the tackle the ball is passed back. He had every right to make that tackle and go to ground.

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DrG January 20, 2014 12:37 am

Tom, the phrase "shoe in" doesn't exist in rugby as far as I am aware, so Matt corrected you by letting you understand it's "shoeing"...

..whilst you might not like being corrected, at least accept the fact he helped you avoid looking like a twit when you talk to some other rugby folk face to face...

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Paul E January 20, 2014 8:41 am

"He deserved a stamp" - as others have said he was there legally and wasn't there trying to drag it down, he's unfortunate more than anything. Aside from that stamping is illegal so he clearly didn't deserve a stamp. Evans took the punishment for the team but there were 2-3 others who could all have been penalised there as well. As soon as the motion of the foot is up and down instead of front to back you're pushing close to a penalty, they all knew that there was nowhere for him to go and I'm sure he'd have taken the punishment with no complaints but your comment is totally wrong.

Specifically for Evans, the case I'd refer to is Nick Wood earlier in the season, that's the closest example I can think of from this season, I therefore wouldn't be surprised to see 6-8weeks ban here. No one but him can know what he intended but what he did was make 3 stamps on a players head. However you try to justify it that just isn't on. Rugby needs aggression and I don't think punishing him here is in anyway trying to remove that, it's just setting boundaries, much like straight arm tackles, tip tackles and eye gouges, some things are just too dangerous, no one wants to see serious injuries

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xxxwookie January 19, 2014 11:47 pm

McCarthy grabbed the ball carrier and pulled him to the ground. It's a tackle and completely legitimate, but the catcher puts the ball back quickly.

Look at the way Evans' foot goes down. When you're mauling, your feet go down at a backward angle to drive forwards in short steps. The gains are inch by inch. You also don't want to be on one foot. What you see of Evans' foot is for one he massively over reaches. His foot (striped boot) goes forward, rakes at the face a few times and then you see it go much further back as he continues with a normal forward drive, miles away from McCarthy's face.

I'm in no doubt he's gone out of his way to give a shoeing, he's connected with the face and that makes it reckless and a long way against the rules. It's not new that stamping isn't cool. 15 years ago, Austin Healey got an 8 week ban for a simiilar stamp that connected with someone's face. Rugby is a tough sport, but it's also a gentleman's sport. Face up to someone if you want to do something, don't do it while they're prone on the floor and you think you might get away with it. That's a footballer thing to do.

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xxxwookie January 20, 2014 12:01 am

Apologies, I've been looking at the wrong boots (number 4 needs looking at too.)

Looking at Evans' body position though, in that position, you'd be going for closer to a seated postion with your feet a long way in front of your body, pushing in with your heels, not straight down as his feet go. He starts off doing it right as youcan see, but when he comes to McCarthy, he takes the opportunity.

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Geoff January 19, 2014 11:45 pm

Nothing wrong there. Bloke falls down. Maul drives over. Play on.

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Canadian content January 20, 2014 3:19 am

Got plenty of these at the bottom of rucks over the years, never respected the guy who did it, cowardly. Never understood it either, where do u get off thinking u can get away with this? Terrible for the game. If u disagree maybe cock fighting is the game for u.

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TotesMcGoates January 20, 2014 3:49 am

Quinnell says in the post match analysis, "When you're in that position, anywhere from the shoulder down is fair game but when you strike a head, you've got to go". Hard to disagree. Dirt from Evans.

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matt January 20, 2014 6:50 pm

I think he summarised it really well. Although McCarthy probably was where he was legally I still think he was being a deliberate and cynical pain, so probably did deserve a bit of a 'warning', however, the head is never on.

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WelshOsprey January 20, 2014 5:26 am

Of all the Heineken cup action, RD chooses to highlight this.
It's barely anything just unlucky to catch a guy in the face. Of course he's allowed to lie there with no penalty against him though.

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ConnachtMan January 20, 2014 9:15 am

If you are going to shoe someone on the ground you had better be looking where your boots are going, look at the studio analysis, the boots were going in BLINDLY( yes McCarthy was making no attempt to get away, that not the point), I have been shoed and done it to others as well over the years. My old coach would make us second rows show him the rake marks from studs on our backs after a game , if we didnt have any, we were dropped for the next game, old school rugby. however, Not once would be consider going for the head or face. Red card deserved for reckless use of the boot.

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stroudos January 20, 2014 9:51 am

"My old coach would make us second rows show him the rake marks from studs on our backs after a game" - I'm not sure that shoeing your own team-mates is really on, even if they do ponce about in the cold area of the pitch comparing hair gel...

;)

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DrG January 20, 2014 11:43 am

My old coach used to make us show him things in the changing rooms.....

....he's no longer allowed to be near children..

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ConnachtMan January 20, 2014 1:29 pm

LOL, Did I mention he was a Priest (seriously!)

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Phil mc avity January 20, 2014 11:36 pm

"That's not how you wash it! Give it here".... "Nice tackle boyo"

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Guy January 20, 2014 9:53 am

Well, if there is one thing we learned from the Horwill-verdict, it is that you are not going to be punished as long as you're not watching what you are standing on.

In light of that verdict I would be surprised to see him get any suspension at all.

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stroudos January 20, 2014 9:57 am

Surprised by this. Ian Evens has always seemed to be a fair player to me - a big hard bastard, but a decent one.

With that in mind, and playing devil's advocate, is it possible that he was actually trying to find his footing on the turf? You know, went to put his foot down and felt a head instead of grass so lifted his foot to try again, then "oh bugger it's that bloke's head again", etc....

No, probably not I suppose.

Just seems odd for a bloke like Evans to get involved in cheap shots, especially with the Six Nations just round the corner. Maybe he's got a mate's stag do on the 1st or 8th Feb or something and needed an excuse to get out of the rugby?

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matt January 20, 2014 6:53 pm

I agree somewhat, I have never seen Evans as a dirty player, I could fully believe that he was just doing his part to encourage a troublesome opponent out of the way, and accidentally caught him in the head. That's not to say he doesn't deserve red, but I would be prepared to believe it was not his aim.

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Wobs January 20, 2014 10:15 am

I am going to assume that most people on here have played rugby. So most would have been in McCarthy's position and Evans position at some point.
If you are in McCarthy's position you expect to get a shoeing on the back or legs it happens, a lot of feet limited space blah blah, you shouldn't be there blah blah, most get up and get on with it.
If you are doing the shoeing you know what you are doing and you know there's a body on floor, most of the time you can see him(head is down driving forward). You know where your foot is going and what you are doing. Even if you cant see the person on the ground (as Evans may not have been, but you can clearly see him trying to see) you can tell the difference between someones back/legs and their head/face. Stand on someones face once ok benefit of the doubth you may not have seen him but you know you just stood on someones face, to go back for seconds and thirds is the act of a scumbag!
If you can't tell the difference between standing on someone's face and have no regard for the safety of other players you should not be on the pitch!
Evans knew what he was doing he could have easily brought his foot forward after the first contact, he didn't and deserves a lenghty ban!

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dave January 20, 2014 4:30 pm

I would say that from watching Ian Evans he's a bit of an idiot
he seems to suffer from tough guy syndrome to the point that if any pushing occurs he has to go in there to feel tough, so this incident doesn't surprise me at all, ban him for life, he's a waste of playing field

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Colombes January 20, 2014 4:41 pm

At first sight, like many, i found hard to justify any intent
But after few slow-motion, u can see Evans foot searching and going for mccarthy head, 2 or 3 times
So despite this long video ref decision, i guess the red card was justified
For the ban, it will depend of Evans defence

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Stuart January 21, 2014 10:51 am

Harry Ellis may disagree with any suggestion that Evans is not a dirty player.....

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Lucius January 21, 2014 5:40 pm

Evans foot went for McCarthy's head at least 2 times. Straight red

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