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Morne Steyn receives three-week suspension for dangerous play

FILE - Bulls flyhalf Morne Steyn has been suspended for three weeks for dangerous play. Photo: Willem Loock/BackpagePix

FILE - Bulls flyhalf Morne Steyn has been suspended for three weeks for dangerous play. Photo: Willem Loock/BackpagePix

Published Feb 21, 2022

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Johannesburg — Former Springbok and veteran Morne Steyn is set to miss the Vodacom Bulls next three fixtures after being sanctioned by the United Rugby Championship’s (URC) disciplinary committee on Monday, a statement by the Pretoria-based union revealed.

As such, the flyhalf will miss the Bulls upcoming fixture on Friday against Zebre; will be unavailable for their Currie Cup encounter against the Griquas in Kimberley a week later; and will also miss their massive clash against Irish giants Munster at Loftus Versveld on March 12.

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Steyn will be available a day later, however, and will once again be eligible for selection when the Bulls take on the Sharks on March 16 in the Currie Cup, and for their URC fixture against Welsh-outfit Scarlets on March 19.

The Bulls No 10 was found guilty of contravening Law 9.13, which states: “A player must not tackle an opponent early, late or dangerously. Dangerous tackling includes, but is not limited to, tackling or attempting to tackle an opponent above the line of the shoulders even if the tackle starts below the line of the shoulders.”

The 37-year-old was found to have contravened the law after receiving a red card in the 11th minute against the Sharks for a late and dangerous tackle on Lukhanyo AM in a URC clash last weekend.

The panel composed of Jennifer Donovan, Rose Alice Murphy and Tony Wheat, all of Ireland, considered all the evidence available, according to the statement, and “concluded that the referee’s decision to issue the red card was correct and so upheld the red card.”

Moreover, the panel “carefully considered the evidence and found that there was a high degree of danger, that the action was at speed with contact made to the neck and jaw area, with insufficient mitigation to reduce the level of sanction.”

In this regard, Steyn – who accepted he had committed an act of foul play, but questioned whether it was a red card offence - can consider himself extremely fortunate. His previous good record and admittance of dangerous play in the AM tackle reduced a recommended six week suspension down to three.

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Bulls touring squad

FORWARDS: Lizo Gqoboka, Gerhard Steenekamp, Simphiwe Matanzima, Jacques van Rooyen, Robert Hunt, Bismarck du Plessis, Johan Grobbelaar, Joe van Zyl, Walt Steenkamp, Ruan Nortje, Janko Swanepoel, Marcell Coetzee, Arno Botha, Elrigh Louw, WJ Steenkamp, Reinhardt Ludwig

BACKS: Embrose Papier, Keagan Johannes, Marco Jansen van Vuren, Chris Smith, Juan Mostert, Harold Vorster, Lionel Mapoe, Stedman Gans, Cornal Hendricks, Madosh Tambwe, Canan Moodie, Kurt-Lee Arendse

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