London Irish hooker Agustin Creevy has been suspended for one week following an independent Disciplinary Hearing arising from his club’s EPCR Challenge Cup quarter-final match against RC Toulon at Stade Félix Mayol.
Creevy was cited by the match Citing Commissioner, Eugene Ryan (Ireland), for pulling the hair of the RC Toulon second row, Eben Etzebeth, in the 35th minute of the match in contravention of Law 9.27.
EPCR has received a citing complaint against Agustin Creevy who pulled Eben Etzebeth's hair.— Jared Wright (@jaredwright17) May 10, 2022
Sanction entry points - Low End: 2 weeks; Mid-range: 4 weeks; Top end: 6 to 52 weeks pic.twitter.com/lpI0y0xMkC
Law 9.27 A player must not do anything that is against the spirit of good sportsmanship
Under World Rugby’s Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 9.27 relating to hair pulling or grabbing carries the following sanction entry points - Low End: 2 weeks; Mid-range: 4 weeks; Top end: 6 to 52 weeks.
An independent Disciplinary Committee comprising Simon Thomas (Wales), chair, and Marcello D’Orey (Portugal), heard submissions from Creevy, who accepted the charge, from the London Irish Director of Rugby, Declan Kidney, from the London Irish Team Manager, Alex James, and from the EPCR Disciplinary Officer, Liam McTiernan.
The committee upheld the citing complaint, finding that Creevy had intentionally pulled Etzebeth’s hair in a manner that warranted a red card, and it then determined that the offence was at the low-end of World Rugby’s sanctions and two weeks was selected as the appropriate entry point.
On the basis that the player accepted that he had committed an act of foul play and had a good disciplinary record, it was decided to grant the full 50% mitigation and the committee therefore reduced the sanction by one week before imposing a one-week suspension.
Creevy will miss the Premiership Rugby Cup final against Worcester Warriors next Tuesday (17 May) and will be free to play next Wednesday (18 May). Both the player and EPCR have the right to appeal the decision.