Georgian U20 player Ilia Spanderashvili saw red yesterday after lashing out at an Irish counterpart with his boot in the run up to a lovely Irish try on day three of the U20 World Championship.
Spanderashvili hit out with his fist and boot at Sean O’Connor, as the Irish lock held the Georgian on the floor before Hugo Keenan went in at the corner to level the scores.
Referee Craig Evans said that “regardless” of O’Connor holding down Spanderashvili, he “lashed out” with his boot and “made contact in the chest area”.
Ireland went on to win the game 35-7 to progress to the semi-finals against Argentina, but they started poorly after Georgia captain Vasil Lobzhanidze scored his nation’s first ever try at an U20 Championship to take the lead.
The Georgians were perhaps lucky not to get two players sent off as Otari Giorgadze also appeared to kick an Irish player in the face in the same play.
It’s also worth noting how clear and precise the assistant referee was in speaking to the TMO.