LIAM MESSAM HEARING OUTCOME

Mar 25 • General News, Super Rugby • 2094 Views • Comments Off on LIAM MESSAM HEARING OUTCOME

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Hearing Details: 24 March 2015 @ 6pm NZDT, 7am SAST, 4pm AEDT via videoconference
Judicial Hearing Chairman: Jannie Lubbe SC
Player: Liam Messam
Team: Chiefs
Position: Flanker
Date of Incident: 21 March 2015
Nature of Offence: Law 10.4 (e) Dangerous Tackling, A player must not tackle an opponent early, late or dangerously.
amended to: Law 10.4 (m) Acts contrary to good sportsmanship. A player must not do anything that is against the spirit of good sportsmanship in the playing enclosure.
Elapsed time in match when incident occurred: 18th minute

SANZAR NEWS RELEASE

Liam Messam Citing Upheld

A SANZAR Judicial Hearing has found Liam Messam of the Chiefs guilty of contravening Law 10.4 (m) Acts contrary to good sportsmanship, after he was cited following a Super Rugby match at the weekend.

No sanction has been imposed on the player.

The incident occurred in the 18th minute of the Super Rugby match between the Sharks and Chiefs at Growthpoint KINGS PARK in Durban on 21 March 2015.

The SANZAR Judicial Hearing was heard by Jannie Lubbe SC via video conference at 6pm NZDT, 7am SAST, 4pm AEDT on 24 March 2015. Adam Magro was the former professional player who attended as a Judicial Technical Adviser.

In his finding, Lubbe ruled the following:

“I reviewed the video footage, the Citing Commissioner’s report and heard submissions from the player’s counsel, Mr Aaron Lloyd, Chiefs’ head coach, Dave Rennie and the player himself. The original charge of a breach of Law 10.4 (e) Dangerous Tackling was amended to a breach of Law 10.4 (m) Acts contrary to good sportsmanship. Amending a charge during the course of a hearing is a power allowed to Judicial Officers by the SANZAR Judicial Rules.

“Mr Lloyd did not object to the amendment and Mr Messam then pleaded guilty to the amended charge. I found the entry point to be at the lower end and after careful consideration of possible mitigating and aggravating features involved, the player’s exemplary disciplinary record across a lengthy career including 134 Super Rugby matches and 42 Test matches for the All Blacks, I concluded that no further sanction should be imposed as a suspension would be wholly disproportionate to the level of offending involved in this case.

“From the video footage, it is clear that the tackle was initially legal. The right arm then slipped around the neck of Sharks’ No. 7 after they went to ground and holding on to the tackled player around his neck in such a manner puts the player in a vulnerable position.

“On the particular facts of this matter and without setting a precedent for these type of actions, it would be wholly disproportionate to the level and type of offending involved to impose a sanction on the player.

“Therefore, the player is found to be guilty of Law 10.4 (m) and no sanction is imposed on the player.”

SANZAR Judicial Rules 9.3
In cases involving offending which has been classified as low end pursuant to Rule 9.4 where there are off-field mitigating factors and the Judicial Officer or Duty Judicial Officer considers that the sanction would be wholly disproportionate to the level and type of offending involved, the Judicial Officer or Duty Judicial Officer may impose less than 50% of the low end sanction including in appropriate cases no sanction.

World Rugby Regulation 17.19.7

In cases involving offending that has been classified pursuant to Regulation 17.19.2 as lower end offending, where:

(a) there are off-field mitigating factors; and

(b) where the Disciplinary Committee or Judicial Officer considers that the sanction would be wholly disproportionate to the level and type of offending involved; the Disciplinary Committee or Judicial Officer may apply sanctions less than 50% of the lower end entry sanctions specified in Appendix 1 including in appropriate cases no sanction.

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