The Outcome Of Manu Tuilagi’s Citing Is A Win For People On Both Sides

We can’t complain.

Manu Tuilagi today escaped a ban after he was ‘controversially’ cited for a hit on Munster’s Chris Cloete. The Leicester centre made direct contact with Cloete’s head using his shoulder during their Champions Cup clash, but the citing itself cause uproar among some.

We were told that the game’s gone ‘soft’ and Tuilagi couldn’t prevent the height of the tackle as Cloete ‘ducked’ under the challenge. The fact remains however, whether or not he did duck, Tuilagi is still responsible under the new directives:

Law 10.4(e) in relation to High Tackles are as follows:

A player must not tackle (or try to tackle) an opponent above the line of the shoulders even if the tackle starts below the line of the shoulders. A tackle around the opponent’s neck or head is dangerous play.

The citing commission ruled that Tuilagi did however, commit a reckless act of foul play, meaning the citing was correctly brought. The tackle perhaps did not warrant a red, but Tuilagi was lucky not to concede a penalty, or even a yellow card on the day.

Here’s what the citing commission said today:

“The Committee found that Tuilagi had committed a reckless act of foul play in that his shoulder had made contact with Cloete’s head, however, the Committee was not satisfied that the offence had warranted a red card.”

As we said yesterday when we defended the citing- banning Tuilagi would probably have been harsh, but he was correctly cited. He led HIGH with his shoulder, and this needs to be stamped out. This citing will set an example going forward. Players making the tackle are more responsible than ever.

Call the game soft all you want, but this is about protecting players and cleaning up the game so that it can continue to grow exponentially on a global scale. Everyone should be happy with the outcome of the hearing. Was it worthy of a ban? Probably not. Was it reckless. You’re damn right it was.

Now can we all be friends again?

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