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Kahui cleared to play old side Chiefs as red card is dismissed

Tue, 17/05/2022, 11:09 pm
Nathan Williamson
by Nathan Williamson
The Force travelled to Dunedin to face the Highlanders.

Western Force outside back Richard Kahui has been cleared to play in Saturday's must-win match against the Chiefs after his red card was dismissed.

Kahui was sent off after a dangerous tackle on Mitch Hunt, ruled to have made head-on-head contact during their 61-10 defeat.

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The Force's decision to contest the charge, which would have likely seen the former All Black miss the rest of the season, was successful as SANZAAR's Judicial Committee ruled there were enough mitigating factors to suggest a yellow card was sufficient.

"Having conducted a detailed review of all the available evidence, including all camera angles and additional evidence, including from the Player, a medical report on the opposition player involved, and having considered the submissions from his legal representative, Michael Tudori. The Judicial Committee found that the Player had not committed an act of foul play worthy of the red card threshold," Judicial Committee Chair Mike Mika ruled.

“The Judicial Committee reviewed the case in accordance with Reg 17.16.1 of World Rugby's regulations and the World Rugby Head Contact Process.”  

“The evidence and submissions on behalf of the Player, together with surrounding circumstances, satisfied the Committee that there was mitigation to lower the incident from Red Card to a Yellow Card. Whilst the incident is dangerous, the contact with the head was not intentional or highly reckless. Kahui was shown to be lowering himself for the tackle on the right-hand side of the opposing Player when a significant movement from the ball carrier meant that the late change in direction contributed to head contact.

“For those reasons, the Committee was satisfied that there was reasonable mitigation and at least warranted a yellow card in the circumstances.

"Mr Kahui is therefore free to play in the upcoming matches."

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The ruling comes at the perfect time for the Force, who face the prospect of playing three games in seven days.

This will commence against Kahui's old team Chiefs, before playing their previously postponed game with Moana Pasifika three days later.

They will round out their season against the Hurricanes on May 28, currently sitting in tenth position on the ladder.

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