Wasps are to appeal against Brad Shields’ four-week ban in the hope it will be overturned in time for Sunday’s Heineken Champions Cup clash with Toulouse.
Shields was given the suspension by an independent disciplinary hearing after being sent off for a dangerous tackle against Munster last weekend.
The panel judged that the influential former England flanker made contact with the head and neck area of prop Dave Kilcoyne at the CBS Arena, thereby warranting the red card.
Wasps, however, are convinced it was harsh and with an appeal likely to be held on Thursday evening, a successful challenge could mean Shields becomes available for the Stade Ernest Wallon showdown.
“I can’t say too much yet because I’ve not received the written judgement,” head coach Lee Blackett said.
“Once we’ve received that, we will appeal it. Saying that we’re appealing it probably tells you all you need to know.
“Brad is desperate to play. He probably feels harshly done to a little bit. Whatever will happen will happen, he’s the ultimate team man and he will react positively.”
Blackett is confident that barring any further losses, Wasps will be able to field a team for their round two fixture against Antoine Dupont’s Toulouse.
Gabe Oghre and Jeff Toomaga-Allen have been added to the injury list after Sunday’s defeat by Munster, lifting the total in the treatment room to 19, while none of the four players who tested positive for Covid will become available.
But Blackett will draft in reinforcements from the academy to make up the numbers.
“As long as nothing drastic happens from now to the game, we will be flying out to Toulouse,” Blackett said.
“If you start looking for excuses, it’s a dangerous path to go down so we just move forward and we’re looking forward to this game at the weekend.”
The Wasps second row, Brad Shields (No 4), was issued with a red card during his club’s Heineken Champions Cup, Round 1 match against Munster Rugby at the Coventry Building Society Arena on Sunday, 12 December 2021.
Shields was sent off by the match referee, Romain Poite (France), in the 26th minute for tackling the Munster prop, Dave Kilcoyne (No 1), in a dangerous manner in contravention of Law 9.13.
Marcello D’Oray (Portugal), Chair, Roger Morris (Wales) and Leon Lloyd (England) have been appointed as the independent Disciplinary Committee for the hearing which will take place by video conference this evening (Tuesday, 14 December).
Law 9.13 A player must not tackle an opponent dangerously
Under World Rugby’s Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 9.13 relating to dangerous tackling carries the following sanction entry points – Low End: 2 weeks; Mid-range: 6 weeks; Top end: 10 to 52 weeks.
Watch all the replays of the incident in this video below:
Meanwhile, Bath wing Will Muir has been banned for four weeks for making contact with the eye area of Leinster’s Josh Van der Flier.
Muir was cited for the incident, which happened in the first-half of the 45-20 Heineken Champions Cup defeat at the Aviva Stadium last Saturday.
A disciplinary hearing upheld the charge after finding that Muir should have been dismissed for a reckless act and imposed a mid-range sanction of six weeks, which was reduced by two weeks because of the 26-year-old’s inexperience.
Sale prop Nick Schonert has received a two-week suspension for dangerous entry into a maul in last Sunday’s 21-13 victory at the Ospreys.