Italy duo Andrea Lovotti and Nicola Quaglio have both received a three-game ban following their dangerous clearout on Duane Vermeulen during their loss to South Africa.
Lovotti received a straight red in the 42nd minute of the 49-3 loss following a nasty tip-tackle on Duane Vermeulen when Italy were only five metres from the South African try-line.
The prop was assisted in the dangerous tackle by Quaglio, however, Lovotti was deemed the worst offender and received his marching orders while his teammate escaped without punishment on the pitch.
Quaglio was cited after the game and the players attended a disciplinary hearing in Tokyo on 6 October before an independent judicial panel chaired by Sir James Dingemans (England) with former international player Olly Kohn (Wales) and former Scotland coach Frank Hadden (Scotland).
55: South Africa 25-3 Italy.
"Blue 1 is the worst offender of those two"
ICYMI: Here is the incident that saw Italian prop Andrea Lovotti sent off 'for dropping a player on his head' against South Africa.
— eir Sport (@eirSport) October 4, 2019
Lovotti admitted the act of foul play and accepted that it warranted a red card. Quaglio accepted that he had committed an act of foul play but denied that it met the red card threshold.
Having considered all the evidence and after hearing from the players and their legal representative, the panel upheld the citing against Quaglio and imposed a sanction of three matches for both players.
In reaching its decision, the panel took into account the following:
1. Both players were involved in lifting South Africa number eight Duane Vermeulen and dropping him to the ground.
2. The dynamics of the tackle were affected by the actions of both players.
3. There was no lasting injury to the South Africa number eight.
4. There were no aggravating factors and full mitigation was applied because of the players’ clean records and acceptance of their individual roles in the foul play.
The players will both miss Italy’s remaining pool match against New Zealand on 12 October. The balance of the suspension will be served in the Rugby World Cup quarter and semi-final should Italy progress. If Italy does not progress, the balance of the suspensions will be served in the players’ upcoming PRO14 matches.