On the 22nd of October, Keith Earls was issued a red card for an incident that occurred during Munster’s Champions Cup clash with the Glasgow Warriors in Thomand Park.
It was a hugely emotional game for Munster as it was their first fixture after the passing of Anthony Foley and, given the importance of the occasion, Earls did not take the referee’s decision to send him off in the most professional manner.
Safe to say Keith Earls isn’t very happy about the red card. The bench do well to dodge the water bottle! https://t.co/WbwVmeTUqe
— EatSleepRugby (@eatsleeprugby) October 22, 2016
Earls had been red carded for a spear tackle on Fraser Brown and, speaking after the game, rather than accept responsibility for incident, the Munster player controversially claimed that Brown could have “done more to protect himself” when being brought to the ground.
As a result of the reaction to the incident and Earls comments, the incident is still being talked about close to two months after the fixture. However, the 29-year-old has now issued a statement accepting all responsibility for the illegal tackle and apologising for ‘the wording’ he used in the controversial interview that followed.
“I wish to address my part in the Champions Cup Munster v Glasgow Warriors game and a subsequent interview I held, as the incident in question has rumbled on for a number of weeks and in addressing this I hope to put to bed a matter that has escalated because of my own doing.
“In a poorly worded interview on my part I failed to acknowledge that I apologised to Fraser Brown for my actions during the Munster v Glasgow Warriors game. I also failed to confirm that I acknowledged I had committed an act of foul play, and fully accepted the corresponding sanction, apologising to Glasgow Warriors and EPCR for my conduct.
“I have since written to EPCR once again confirming my acceptance of the disciplinary decision and outcome. I have also addressed the misunderstanding directly with Fraser and unreservedly apologised again for my actions and the wording I used during the interview.
“I hope this paints a clearer picture for all and I believe it is important October 22nd in Thomond Park is remembered for the right reasons and not for something I deeply regret.”