SANZAR Judicial Officer Nigel Hampton QC clarified that the one week suspension handed to Nonu on Monday 21 February was intended to render him ineligible to play in the match that was scheduled to be played against the Crusaders in Wellington on Saturday 26 February. Today’s clarification follows the cancellation of that match in the wake of the earthquake in Christchurch on Tuesday.
In a written supplementary ruling today Mr Hampton said that the decision by the Crusaders to not travel to Wellington for their round two fixture, would effectively result in Nonu being eligible to play rugby without serving any effective sanction.
“That would be wrong. A suspension from playing rugby must be a real one, and not a notional one,” Mr Hampton said in his ruling.
The Hurricanes have a ‘bye’ in Week 3 and Mr Hampton said that to make the suspension effective, Nonu’s ban would now be extended up to, and including, Monday 14 March, effectively making his suspension served by missing the Hurricanes v Chiefs match at Westpac Stadium on 12 March.
Nonu has the right to appeal this decision.