Monday 26 September 2016

Marler hit with two-match ban following 'gypsy boy' slur

Nigel Whittaker

Published 06/04/2016 | 02:30

England prop Joe Marler has been banned for two games after his “gypsy boy” slur. Photo: Andrew Matthews/PA
England prop Joe Marler has been banned for two games after his “gypsy boy” slur. Photo: Andrew Matthews/PA

England and Harlequins prop Joe Marler has been banned for two games after his "gypsy boy" slur against Wales forward Samson Lee during last month's Six Nations Championship game at Twickenham.

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A three-man independent judicial committee suspended Marler following a hearing in London.

He was also fined £20,000 - to be paid to a suitable equality charity - after a misconduct charge against him was upheld.

The 25-year-old, who has won 42 caps, had avoided any sanction from Six Nations chiefs and the Rugby Football Union following the March 12 incident, but World Rugby launched independent action.

World Rugby said the misconduct charge was "admitted in its entirety" by Marler.

Meanwhile, Wales wing Alex Cuthbert has signed a new contract with Cardiff Blues.

The Blues' announcement comes as 26-year-old Cuthbert continues his rehabilitation from a successful knee surgery that he recently underwent in Sweden.

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Cuthbert, who has won 42 Wales caps and toured Australia with the 2013 Lions, will not play again this season and will also be sidelined for his national side's three-Test trip to New Zealand in June.

"I've really enjoyed the environment and culture this season at Cardiff Blues under (head coach) Danny Wilson, and the direction we are all now heading in," Cuthbert said.

"The players have really bought into the style of rugby we're looking to produce, and that has been reflected in the results over the last six months."

Cuthbert joined the Guinness Pro12 outfit during the 2011-'12 campaign, and has so far scored 37 tries in 79 appearances.

Elsewhere, Harlequins have announced the signing of Worcester scrum-half Charlie Mulchrone.

The 26-year-old, who is qualified to play for England and Ireland, will head to Quins from their Premiership rivals in July.

Prior to joining Worcester in 2014, Mulchrone was captain of Championship club Rotherham.

Quins head coach John Kingston said: "We have been monitoring Charlie for a couple of years and are very excited to finally be able to bring him to Harlequins next season.

"He fits perfectly with the style of nine we need at the club, and I am sure he will push on very quickly within our structure, working alongside Danny Care and Karl Dickson." l Twickenham will stage the Rugby Championship Test match between Argentina and Australia on Saturday, October 8.

It will be the first Rugby Championship match to be played outside any of the competing nations.

Irish Independent

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