Ulster winger Robert Baloucoune faced a disciplinary hearing today via video conference and has been banned for two weeks due to an incident during the province’s 19-12 derby win over Munster in Belfast last Friday.
A disciplinary committee convened in Edinburgh to consider the citing complaint made against Robert Baloucoune for an incident which occurred against Munster last Friday. The complaint refers to his challenge on an airborne Darren Sweetnam from the kick-off of the GUINNESS PRO14 round 11 fixture at Kingspan Stadium.
Baloucoune, who was yellow carded at the time by referee Sean Gallagher, was reported by citing commissioner Eddie Walsh for alleged infringement of law 9.11 – players must not do anything that is reckless or dangerous to others, and law 9.17 – a player must not tackle, charge, pull, push or grasp an opponent whose feet are off the ground.
The disciplinary committee, comprising of Robert Milligan QC (chair), Sheriff Kathrine Mackie and Jennifer Rae (all Scotland) concluded that the Ulster winger had committed an act of foul play in terms of law 9.17. Baloucoune also accepted that his actions warranted a red card.
In upholding the citing complaint, the disciplinary committee deemed that the offence merited a low end-range entry point of four weeks. Full mitigation of 50% was applied after considering the player’s previously clean disciplinary record, his admission that his actions warranted a red card and the co-operation of both the player and Ulster Rugby throughout the process.
As a result, Baloucoune is banned for a period of two weeks and is free to play from midnight on Sunday, January 6. The 21-year-old, whose suspension rules him out of the PRO14 games against Connacht and Leinster, was reminded of his right to appeal.