France investigated over HIA

International
AFP
by AFP

Six Nations chiefs on Sunday revealed they will review several incidents relating to head injury protocols in Ireland's 15-13 win over France.

France stars Matthieu Jalibert and Antoine Dupont suffered knee injuries, but were also sent for head injury assessments (HIAs) in Saturday's clash.

France coach Jacques Brunel claimed this was ordered by the independent doctor at the Stade de France in Paris.

Dupont's departure for an HIA was particularly controversial as it allowed starting scrum-half Maxime Machenaud to return to the field instead of forcing France to bring on wing Benjamin Fall instead.

That would have forced France into a backline reshuffle.

Former Ireland skipper Brian O'Driscoll was among those who questioned the fairness of the decisions.

O'Driscoll tweeted: "Just because we won with an INCREDIBLE 42 METER drop goal that HIA decision shouldn't get swept under the carpet. It was nothing short of a disgrace!!!"

On Sunday, the Six Nations announced in a statement: "The HIA review processor is reviewing a number of incidents from the France v Ireland match in the senior men's championship.

"Depending on their findings, Six Nations Rugby Limited (SNRL) will be considering the next steps in respect of those incidents."

The statement said sanctions could be imposed -- without saying who to -- and changes made to the process, depending on the review panel's findings.

"The HIA review panel can as part of its review make recommendations (among other things) as to further education and training that is required, and/or whether disciplinary action should be taken by SNRL. This two-stage review process is required by World Rugby."

Both Dupont and Jalibert suffered cruciate knee ligament damage, with the former's season now over and the latter likely to miss the rest of the Six Nations.

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