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Tameifuna's huge hit on Michael Hooper


Huge hit by Tonga in Pacific Nations Cup


Barbarians too good for England XV


Japanese player loses ball over tryline


Eddie Butler on Jonny Wilkinson career


The Top 5 French Flair moments


Bloody Florian Fritz returns to play

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Morgan Parra banned for two weeks for head butt on Rene Ranger

Clermont scrumhalf Morgan Parra has been suspended for two weeks for head-butting Montpellier's Rene Ranger in their Top 14 clash at the weekend. He has only just been called into the France squad, but will miss their next match, against Scotland.  

In what was a strange sequence of play, Parra took a quick tap penalty behind the referees back after Montpellier infringed at a ruck. Ranger, who had his back turned, caught what was happening in the corner of his eye so casually inserted his gumguard, then smashed the fiesty Frenchman.

Ranger clearly wasn't ten meters away so while Parra had a right to be less than pleased, his way of dealing with it - by charging with his head - is what got him in trouble.

A yellow card for Ranger followed, before a shocked home crowd watched as referee Sébastien Minery showed Parra red, leaving Clermont with just 14 men for the rest of the match.

"I feel deep frustration and anger over the red card for Morgan Parra," said Clermont's Kiwi coach, Vern Cotter. "I hope that at the disciplinary hearing there will be reasonable and intelligent people who will see it was not deserved."

The LNR (Top 14's governing body) ruled that Parra is suspended for two consecutive matches on the grounds of 'excitability'. Parra and Clermont have opted not to appeal the decision.

He will miss their match against Bordeaux-Begles, and then France's clash with Scotland on the 8th March. He will however be available to face Ireland at the Stade De France a week later.

Despite being a man down, Montpellier's Francois Trinh-Duc was yellow carded shortly before Ranger returned, giving Clermont a lifeline that they duly accepted, and went on to win 42-16. That takes their Stade Marcel Michelin record to 73 matches in a row unbeaten, dating back to 2009.

Posted at 11:32 am | 47 comments

Northland Haka for departing Rene Ranger

Rene Ranger shows the finger after high tackle by Bundee Aki

Ligtoring Landman celebration after Rene Ranger hit

Jean Deysel plays on after jersey ripped by Rene Ranger

Rene Ranger's massive tackle on the Brumbies' Nic White

James O'Connor injured then flattened by Rene Ranger

Morgan Parra vs George Chuter and simultaneous yellow

Richie McCaw knee on Morgan Parra and other controversies

Rene Ranger has a go at the Digby Ioane turtle

Rene Ranger big hit on Zane Kirchner

Rene Ranger huge hit on Christian Lealiifano

Courtney Lawes smashes Morgan Parra in Cup Final

Posted in Big Hits & Dirty Play

Viewing 47 comments

Bunn February 27, 2014 5:02 pm

I be fair to Ranger he's pretty close to being 10 yards away. Parra's headbutt was plain stupid

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Jones February 27, 2014 5:06 pm

Now the important question must be asked, how will the French blame another country for this ban?

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Reality February 27, 2014 5:26 pm

Well it's pretty clear that it's an Anglo-Saxon conspiracy and that referees always treat English-speakers nicely and French people harshly.

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Oliver February 27, 2014 6:00 pm

wow. that's a pretty big chip on your shoulder you guys have.
Cuckolded by a Frenchman?
Vexed at England's defeat?
Whatever the case may be........
messieurs, je vous salue bien !

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Colombes February 28, 2014 3:32 pm

Reading the number of people who seemed to like your "quality" comment, it just proves RD blog threads are falling in quality...

More seriously, Parra had a stupid reaction and will assume his ban, so will do Picamoles who should learn to hide his frustration

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UKSaffa February 27, 2014 5:09 pm

Muppet commentator, "dangerous tackle".....lol bugger off and go play football!!

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TLewis February 27, 2014 5:25 pm

How far was Rene away 9yards? feel like there is no leeway there. In my opinion the tackle was hardly dangerous as the commentator suggests, Parra would have ran straight into Ranger regardless of the whistle. The headbutt was just petulant, no card for Ranger and Red Card (sadly) for Parra.

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stroudos February 27, 2014 5:27 pm

RE-ARRANGERED!!! Boom! What a belter of a tackle. That's the first thing to establish here. Bugger all wrong with the tackle itself - I think one of the commentators (more on them in a minute) described it as "cynical". Bullshit, it was textbook.

If Ranger was not 10m back he must have been at least 990cm. Maybe not from the ref's mark, but certainly from where Parra took it (pretty much on the 22).

Parra's an idiot. Taking the tap behind the ref's back, how dopey is that. Just because you get humiliated and emasculated in a tackle, you can't go round headbutitng people! Throroughly deserved red and ban.

Finally - those commentators!! Who are these people? They're a disgrace to the art of calling a game and an embarrassment to England. Fucking idiots. Didn't have a clue what was going on, but kept spouting more and more nonsense. As for the cycnical business, the only one being cynical here was Parra - his only intention was trying to catch someone closer than 10m, which I have no problem with if the oppo are 2-3m away and being deliberately lazy in getting back, but this was just fucking stupid and I took an enormous amount of pleasure in seeing him reaRangerred for his trouble.

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Full Back February 27, 2014 5:56 pm

...apart from agreeing with you on the tackle and the proximity to 10mtrs, I'm wondering what the yellow was for? Was it because the legs were deemed above the shoulders on impact? because he'd blown the whistle? Normally tackling within 10mtrs just results in having the ball moved on another 10.

Also how calm was Rene after getting his face tickled by Parra?

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DrG February 27, 2014 6:29 pm

I believe the yellow was for not retreating 10.

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matt February 27, 2014 7:42 pm

If the rules are now to give a yellow every time someone isn't 10 then we should be seeing a lot more players enjoying a break

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DrG February 27, 2014 9:48 pm

Ahem..Laws..Ahem..

Depends on the frequency of the infringement though doesn't it. I didn't see the game so I cannot comment, but if this has happened a few times (which might be why Parra did it because he knew it had?) then the referee might be making an example..

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Facepalm February 27, 2014 8:12 pm

You seriously start to wonder where they find these guys. Not only are the talking nonsense but they do it in a flat, mumbling, monotonous voice. At least with someone like Miles Harrison he sounds interested by his own nonsense.

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CEO Front Row Union February 28, 2014 2:57 am

.... reaRangerred ....

F#@%ing love that.
Even if I didn't watch the video, that one word my friend, explains everything.

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stroudos February 28, 2014 4:03 am

Copyright Sean Maloney / Rugby HQ / Plays of the Week!

It's on RD somewhere but can't find at the moment:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ksSI5kpRFHY


View Video

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stroudos February 27, 2014 5:35 pm

@RD - absolutely love this phrase:

"Ranger ... casually inserted his gumguard, then smashed the feisty Frenchman".


Brilliant!

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TX_Talonneur February 27, 2014 5:42 pm

C'mon now!! How Parra possibly think that little head-butt was going to even the score for him?

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Eddie-g February 27, 2014 6:24 pm

Like a few others, I reckon Ranger is just about back 10. And he certainly believed he was back 10 - someone who knows he hasn't retreated pulls a village lazy runner type pose, arms in the air, "hey look ref I'm really not trying to interfere with play". Not here though, he just stood his ground and put Parra flat on his derriere.

Other issue surely is that Saint-Andre has recently gone all Javert on French indiscipline, so I wonder how he'll treat Parra. Picamoles just got punished for a much less serious indiscretion.

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DrG February 27, 2014 6:35 pm

I have to agree with most of y'all here. I personally thought and as Eddie has stated Ranger probably thought that he was 10. As Eddie stated, unless you genuinely believe you're back 10, you're not going to smash someone like that as you're really asking for a card.

Agree with Stroudos up there regarding Parra's reasons for that run.. I mean really, a 9 ran into one of the largest clouds of red shirts I've seen since a Wales v Tonga match, he isn't exactly going to get very far, and he knows it!

All that being said, red card? yellow card? ban? It's all a bit silly in some respect, I posted on a previous video that I felt that it could be dealt with using the old Nigel Owens precedent of 'You're both acting very immature!'. - As can most things on the pitch.

Of course letter of the law Parra can be rightly given a red card and ban..

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Eddie-g February 27, 2014 6:52 pm

@DrG - I'm not sure there's a scrumhalf on the planet who hasn't pulled the old run-at-the-opposition-who-might-not-have-retreated move. So, yes, somewhat dickish by Parra, but I'm pretty much fine with it.

However, reacting like he did to someone who spied the sneaky move is totally out of line. It was more than handbags, it deserved a red, and in the context when it happened, basically unprovoked and Parra behaving like an entitled douchebag, that's extra justification for a ban.

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DrG February 27, 2014 9:59 pm

Don't disagree with you, it's a typical scrum half move and I am happy with it I suppose, and we can plainly see it was a move to get a penalty further up because; as I said, Parra is rather 'petite' shall we say, and he's not going to run into that cloud of red expecting to get anywhere. - So we agree on that bit..

As for the headbutt, I know it was pathetic, but it was nothing really. Maybe you guys are (and I am not) looking into it deeper than the actual headbutt and more into the principle (which I don't knock for a second btw). I have to keep referring back to this incident for every 'headbutt' we have these days and it is the Tom James incident. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rJrZdhtJQ4 and perhaps more recently the Huget v Brown incident.

Maybe I'm looking at it a bit oldschool but I just think giving him a red AND a ban is too black and white. If I squint hard I can see the red and can't complain, but not the ban (I know 2 weeks is very small) I just think it's a bit much over what looked more like a connection of heads than a headbutt...

View Video

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Eddie-g February 27, 2014 10:19 pm

I hear you on the red and the ban argument. I was thinking more along he lines of appropriate punishment given current irb directives, but I'd have no problems if the rules said a red was enough.

I don't think brown-huget actually was a headbutt, but this one, I think the intent was pretty clear and there was contact. Ranger felt it for sure.

Point is, you could relax the rules; but as they are now, parra surely can have no complaints

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DrG February 27, 2014 10:29 pm

Yeh true I suppose, 2 weeks is not exactly going to be too much of an issue.

Brown seemed to claim it was a headbutt and Goode? Although naturally they're probably trying to get one over the old Frenchies.

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Pipo February 28, 2014 12:51 am

OMG, in that video DrG posted, it pains me to see a rugby player act like if he is freaking Cristiano Ronaldo. Seriously, he should have gotten a red too for acting like that. Disgusting.

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CEO Front Row Union February 28, 2014 3:02 am

I would like to believe that it was RED for the HEADbutt ...
and two weeks for being a dickHEAD.

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Jon February 27, 2014 10:01 pm

The scrum half ran, Ranger made the tackle. Why are the commentators crying?
Maybe he wasn't back ten, but he was close.
Weird commentary, weird crowd reaction, as though Ranger should have just let him waltz past.
And the head but, just petulant.

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DrG February 27, 2014 10:34 pm

For the guys who think this commentary is awful, just watch the French version, don't understand a word of it, but the 'ohhlalalala' is perfect! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W_wfXFZXP90

View Video

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stroudos February 28, 2014 4:10 am

DrG, FYI you've actually posted the link to that Tom James "headbutt" again.

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DrG February 28, 2014 12:23 pm

Wait... you sure? Just clicked on it... it's fine... same link below as above...

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Oliver February 28, 2014 1:26 pm

yup, link's fine.

The French commentators have the same to say as most of the posters here btw.

- tackle is fine
- Ranger was not 10 m away, but almost.
- red card for that headbutt seems a bit much.

I hope to never see the day a ref pulls out some cards for something like the Brown/Huget confrontation....

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DrG March 01, 2014 1:03 am

Don't ever watch the link I posted further up regarding Tom James headbutt then..

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stroudos February 28, 2014 3:30 pm

Very odd - didn't earlier... Apologies for the false alarm!

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Phil mc avity February 27, 2014 10:34 pm

People were saying they would have Parra as French captain. He's not disciplined at all. The French have a discipline problem at the moment, Pape having a go at Bonneval, Picamoles clapping at the ref (what an arrogant wanker) and Parra headbutting for this. Not professionnal.
Maybe as Stroudos said, Ranger wasnt quite 10m back but I'm glad he smashed Parra.
Eddie-G I dissagree with you saying that "Picamoles had a much less serious indiscretion". Picamoles was representing France at the highlest level (internationnal level) and had a stupid childish non respectfull reaction, fair play to Saint Andre, he had the balls to drop him! Parra was just as bad, headbutting Rene but disrespecting the ref isnt any better.

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Eddie-g February 27, 2014 10:54 pm

I dunno, a headbutt seems worse to me. Rude and violent trumps simply rude in my book, but to each his own.

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Canadian content February 27, 2014 10:43 pm

The only thing I wonder about the Ranger tackle was that he dropped him a little bit, not much, and it wasn't quite ten. Maybe in combo with the previous holding on penalty the yellow was assessed, which I like actually. You can't get a penalty, which turns the ball over, then turn around and immediately get another trying to stop the advancement of the ball and expect to stay on the field.

too bad he dropped him a little, I think you have a duty to take people to the ground, because this could have been a smashing example of how to make a big, lifting tackle but not drive the dude into the ground.

Oh and Parra is a fool, dump cheap shot he'd have never done without all of his buddies there. COuld be just me but he is a really dis likable player.

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stroudos February 28, 2014 4:16 am

Corrected your middle paragraph for you:

Nice work by Ranger controlling Parra all the way to the ground, I think you have a duty to take people to the ground, because this IS a smashing example of how to make a big, lifting tackle but not drive the dude into the ground.

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Pedro Carvalho February 27, 2014 11:31 pm

Poor Ranger! With no reason that big bully Parra nearly headbutted him to death!!! Or something completely different...

Picamoles is right. IRB officials have double standards when judging french players.

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Oliver February 28, 2014 8:43 am

A few points here:

- it's not the first time Parra does something stupid this season...... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJ0OfDsdS0c
He should NOT be French captain, my vote would go to Nyanga until Dusautoir is back. Also Parra is disliked by quite a few French fans! But I still think he should be in the squad. And a scrum-half has to be a bit of an asshole anyways right?

- The Picamoles clapping incident: it's not new! I just saw a documentary with the infamous 1992 incident of Moscato being sent off against England, and Jeff Tordo, French captain no less, claps at the referee........It's a cultural thing really: France is a latin country, and we just don't have the discipline of more northern nations, we show our emotions more. Things like that are a big part of the misunderstandings between the French and British I think.
That being said, I have to say I understand Picamoles' frustration. That yellow card was simply ridiculous. The clapping was stupid, but I can understand, and I hope he'll learn from it.

View Video

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DrG February 28, 2014 12:29 pm

Hard to see who was at fault with that Parra incident in all fairness...

But is Parra the new Cudmore?

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stroudos February 28, 2014 3:32 pm

Hard to see who was at fault with that Parra incident

I'd suggest the feisty little smallman-syndrome sufferer throwing uppercuts at a bloke who's being restrained by three others was at least moderately out of order.

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DrG February 28, 2014 6:59 pm

Lol, sorry, I meant who was at fault to start with... I see the tackle coming through slightly after Parra has shifted the ball which looked fine, whether Parra reacted to that or something else is what I meant...

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Colombes February 28, 2014 3:42 pm

Waw. just discovering the "let's abuse parra" comments party.
a bit pathetic isn't it? ;)

Whatever, Ranger wasn't at 10 meters but Parra reacted with silly manners. So he will swallow it and assume his ban, such like Picamoles will learn to hide his frustration by watching scotland-france on tv.

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Facepalm February 28, 2014 5:57 pm

"Silly manners"? If nothing else the thread shows Parra has a worryingly large history of "silly manners" as you call them. Although I think I prefer the terms "right hook", "uppercut" and "overcompensating for something". In much the same way any player comes under criticism so to does Parra. Hardly pathetic is it.

Unlike most people I actually feel a bit sorry for Picamoles. Plus he's cost be a bloody transfer on fantasy rugby!

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4LC4TR4Z March 02, 2014 8:55 am

The little prank Parra got a white card and can cheat whenever he wants all season long.

That's just a silly formal suspension to give some change, the only game he'll miss in the meantime is France vs Scotland when he would had not been called for !

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