JOHANNESBURG - Bulls prop Pierre Schoeman has been slapped with a six week ban after pleading guilty to biting a Melbourne Rebels player in the Bulls 28-10 win over the Australian side on Saturday.
Schoeman becomes the second Bulls player this season to cop a heavy ban after Conraad van Vuuren was also hit with a similar ban for a late and reckless tackle on Chiefs flyhalf Damian McKenzie.
Schoeman had already been excluded from selection from the team to play against the Highlanders on Saturday with Lizo Gqoboka taking his place in the starting line-up.
The former Junior Springbok is fortunate to escape with half of the suspension that should have been meted out to him with the judicial committee taking into consideration Schoeman’s guilty plea and his good disciplinary record.
"Having conducted a detailed review of all the available evidence, including all camera angles and additional evidence, including from the player and submissions from his legal representative, Attie Heyns, the Judicial Committee accepted the player’s guilty plea and upheld the citing under Law 9.12 - A Player must not physically abuse anyonesaid a Sanzar statement on behalf of the judicial committee which was chaired by Adam Casselden SC and includes Eroni Clarke and De Wet Barry.
"Physical abuse includes, but is not limited to Biting. With respect to sanction the Judicial Committee deemed the act of foul play merited a low-end entry point of 12 weeks. However, taking into account mitigating factors including the player’s early guilty plea, his good character, his good disciplinary record and his remorse the Judicial Committee reduced the suspension to a period of six weeks."