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Monday Jan 10, 2022

Opening minute red card leaves coach questioning current laws

Rory Sutherland’s return to rugby lasted all of six minutes. The Worcester forward found himself on the wrong end of the ref’s whistle for a head clash early on in his side’s 22-19 loss to Bath. The decision didn’t sit well with head coach Jonathan Thomas. 

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Sutherland was returning after having spent six weeks out injured. The Scotland international was carded by referee Craig Maxwell-Keys for a head clash with Will Stuart.

Thomas said: “By the letter of the law it’s a red card and you can’t argue with it, but I think there is an issue with the law… Something is wrong with the game if we are going to have a sending-off for that.

WATCH: Chiefs prop sent off for dangerous challenge on England’s Joe Marler

“I am bitterly disappointed to go down to 14 players and lose. I thought we were the better team with 14, and we had to be tactically smart.

“The players showed huge, huge character and I am gutted for them because we created opportunities. It was an unbelievable effort.”

Sutherland will now face a disciplinary hearing, meaning his participation in Scotland’s opening Six Nations match could be in doubt.

Scotland host England on February 5.

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