Flannery cited for 'kick'
Ireland hooker Jerry Flannery has been cited for his dangerous lunge on Alexis Palisson in Saturday's RBS 6 Nations defeat by France.
Flannery has been charged with an "alleged kick" on the France winger in the 23rd minute of the championship showdown in Paris.
If the citing is upheld, the Munster hooker faces a minimum four-week suspension - potentially ruling him out of the fixtures against England and Wales.
The independent three-man Six Nations disciplinary committee is set to be convened on Wednesday and is sure to take a dim view of an offence that carries a maximum ban of a year.
Flannery scythed down Palisson with a powerful kick after the Montauban back had picked up the ball and was lucky to concede only a penalty.
Referee Wayne Barnes consulted his touch judge Stuart Terheege, who believed the challenge to be a "shoulder charge", and Flannery escaped a potential red card.
But replays showed the severity of an incident that could have caused serious injury to Palisson, who was subsequently forced from the pitch with a dead leg.
The mid-range sanction for the offence in contravention of Law 10.4 (c) is eight weeks with the top end 12 weeks, which can be extended to a possible year.
Should Flannery be suspended, Rory Best of Ulster will take the number two jersey after recovering from neck surgery in time for the Six Nations.