Following a citing for an alleged biting incident against Munster at Thomond Park, Stormers lock Adre Smith has now been banned for a period of eight weeks.
Just as Munster scored through another South African, Jean Kleyn, there was a coming together of Smith and Munster hooker Niall Scannell.
It appeared as though Scannell was holding onto the second row for longer than appreciated and that’s when the retaliating took place, leading to the hooker immediately claiming that he had been bitten.
“He has a full-on bite mark on his leg,” said Munster skipper Peter O’Mahony, but as was explained to him by the referee, they could only rule on the footage available.
The TMO could only find the altercation, so the match continued but Smith was later cited under Law 9.12 A player must not physically or verbally abuse anyone. Physical abuse includes, but is not limited to, biting, punching, contact with the eye or eye area, striking with any part of the arm (including stiff-arm tackles), shoulder, head or knee(s), stamping, trampling, tripping or kicking.
After facing a disciplinary hearing via video conference on Thursday night, the Disciplinary Panel, comprising of Sheriff Kathrine Mackie, Iain Leslie (both Scotland) and Janet Gedrych (Wales) upheld the citing after the player failed to prove on the balance of probabilities that foul play had not occurred.
The panel selected a low-range entry point. Smith’s previous record and behaviour during the process were considered and mitigation of 30% was applied.
As a result, he has been banned for a period of 8 games. He is free to play from midnight on Sunday, February 13th, 2022.
The Stormers will reportedly appeal the decision.
The incident takes place with 45:38 minutes on the clock: