Wasps winger Paolo Odogwu has been handed a six-week ban for kicking an opponent in the head.
The 22-year-old was sent off by referee Tom Foley after catching Rohan Van Rensburg with a boot to the face when jumping to catch the ball in the 79th minute of his side’s 28-18 Gallagher Premiership defeat at Sale last Friday.
Odogwu admitted the charge when he appeared before an independent disciplinary panel in Bristol on Wednesday evening and was banned until December 23.
Hearing chairman Dan White said: “The panel did not accept the player’s explanation that his leg extended to assist his balance in the air and prevent him from falling backward.
“The panel found that, while he did not intentionally aim to make contact with the Sale player’s face, he did intend to use his outstretched leg to fend off a potential oncoming player and was reckless as to whether or not it made contact or caused injury.
“In this case the dangerous action of the player resulted in a minor injury to the Sale player.
“In our opinion this was nevertheless a top end entry point; his disrespectful behaviour to the referee and crowd, after receiving the red card, only served to reinforce our view.
“His behaviour reflected poorly on the player and the game as a whole.”