Leinster to appeal Cian Healy's two week ban for kneeing Toulon's Guilhem Guirado
Leinster have decided to exercise their right to appeal the two week ban handed to Cian Healy by European Professional Club Rugby at a hearing in Paris today.
Healy was sited on Tuesday for kneeing Guirado during the first half of Leinster's Champions Cup loss to Toulon at the Stade Felix Mayol, which Citing Commissioner John Byett claimed in his formal complaint was in violation of Law 10.4 (f).
This afternoon in Paris, the prop pleaded not guilty to the charge and, due to insufficient evidence, the original charge of striking could not be proven.
However, the 2013 Lion was found to have committed an act of foul play and the charge was amended to Dangerous charging or obstructing or grabbing of an opponent without the ball, including shouldering – Law 10.4 (f) and Law 10.4 (k).
The sanction imposed by Wales' Roger Morris meant Healy would not be eligible to play until December 28, making him unavailable for Saturday's return clash with Toulon at the Aviva Stadium and the Pro 12 derby away to Munster on December 27.
The province released a statement this evening stating their intention to appeal the ban:
"Leinster Rugby have informed EPCR of their intention to appeal the decision of the independent Judicial Officer Roger Morris to suspend Leinster prop Cian Healy for two weeks under Law 10.4 (f).
"The basis for the appeal will centre on the fact that Cian Healy was called to the independent Disciplinary Hearing in Paris today for allegedly striking RC Toulon hooker Guilhem Guirado in contravention of Law 10.4 (a).
Having heard submissions from both sides and the player himself who denied the charge, the Judicial Officer retired to consider the matter. On returning he informed those present that the charge under Law 10.4 (a) was not proven.
"However he went on to find that Cian Healy had contravened Law 10.4 (f) which charge had not been put to the player by either the Judicial Officer or EPCR at any stage before or during the Disciplinary Hearing.
"Leinster believe that this is a failure to follow due process and is unfair to Cian Healy
"Leinster Rugby have further requested that the chairman of the Disciplinary Panel lift Cian Healy's suspension pending the outcome of the appeal, which Leinster are confident will be successful.
"Until there is a further update, Leinster Rugby will be making no further comment on this issue."