England’s Dylan Hartley handed eight-week ban for biting
England hooker Dylan Hartley hit with an eight-week ban for biting the finger of Ireland's Stephen Ferris during Six Nations
England will be able to call on Dylan Hartley for June’s tour of South Africa after the hooker received an eight-week ban for an act contrary to good sportsmanship.
The Northampton Saints star was cited for biting the finger of Ireland flanker Stephen Ferris in their Six Nations clash on 17 March, England winning 30-9 at Twickenham and an independent Six Nations committee upheld the decision.
The hooker was an ever-present for England during the Championship, starting every game as the Red Rose finished second overall, with a solitary 19-12 defeat at home by Grand Slam champions Wales.
Hartley’s ban means the only way the Saints skipper will run out for his club again this season will be if they reach the Premiership final on 26 May – 12 days after his suspension is up.
Hartley said: “I am disappointed by the result and I will wait for the written judgment as to how the panel came to their conclusion.
“I now have to put it behind me and focus on supporting Saints in training and off the field.”
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