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Reduced ban is World Cup reprieve for Scotland prop

Zander Fagerson has received a reduced suspension following his charging into a ruck incident, making him available for Scotland’s opening match at the World Cup. The Glasgow tighthead prop was initially sent off for a high tackle on Pierre Bourgarit during Scotland’s victory over France at Murrayfield.

The reduction in his three-game ban involves a “coaching intervention programme,” allowing him to participate in Scotland’s match against reigning world champions South Africa in Marseille on September 10th. However, Fagerson will not be playing in this weekend’s rematch against France or the final tournament warm-up against Georgia.

The independent judicial committee overseeing the case, which included Rhian Williams (chair, Wales), Jamie Corsi (Wales), and Juan Pablo Spirandelli (Argentina), decided to amend Fagerson’s offense to Law 9.20 (b), which pertains to dangerous play in a ruck or maul, specifically prohibiting contact with an opponent above the shoulders.

Reduced ban is World Cup reprieve for Scotland prop

Fagerson himself acknowledged the severity of his actions, admitting that he deserved the red card. The standard minimum suspension for foul play resulting in head contact, according to World Rugby’s guidelines, is four weeks. However, due to Fagerson’s admission of guilt and expression of remorse, the suspension was reduced to three weeks. The additional offer of a training program further shortened the ban to two matches.

The provided statement clarified that the training course is designed to address specific techniques and technical aspects that contributed to the foul play incident.

Scotland’s head coach, Gregor Townsend, emphasized prior to Fagerson’s hearing that there was no intention of malice or foul play involved in his challenge on Bourgarit.

Scotland’s World Cup journey in Pool B also includes matches against Tonga, Romania, and Ireland.


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