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Two players receive World Cup bans

Samoa's Soteria Pulumu and South Africa captain Mandissa Williams will both miss the rest of the World Cup having been handed bans for foul play in the opening games. 

 Pulumu's tackle against Natasha Hunt of England saw an immediate red card and having appeared before independent Judicial Officer Jeremy Summers and having been cited for an act of Foul Play contrary to Law 10.4(j), namely lifting a player from the ground and dropping or driving that player into the ground,  she has been handed a five week ban. 

In the context of the tournament, this means the player will miss the remaining matches at the tournament and is further suspended from 18 August to midnight on 24 August 2014. 

The player has the right to appeal and the full written decision is available here.

South African player captain Mandisa Williams also appeared before the panel having been cited for acts of Foul Play contrary to Law 10.4(a) namely, striking a player with the fist or arm and Law 10.4(m) namely, acts contrary to good sportsmanship (contact with the eye(s) or eye area) in the match against Australia on August 1, 2014.   

Having heard all the evidence, the Judicial Officer determined that in relation to the acts contrary to Law 10.4(m), the player’s actions warranted a mid-range sanction, which has an entry point of 18 weeks. 

Having applied various aggravating and mitigating factors including the player’s clean disciplinary record, the final sanction stands at 16 weeks.  The Judicial Officer further imposed a sanction of 2 weeks in relation to the acts contrary to Law 10.4(a) which will run concurrently. 

In the context of the tournament, this means the player will miss the remaining 4 matches of the tournament and is suspended for a further 7 weeks until the end of the South African Rugby season on 27 September 2014 with the remaining 5 weeks of the suspension to be served at the start of next Rugby season in South Africa. 

The player has the right to appeal and the full written decision will follow.