The International Rugby Board has confirmed to the Australian Rugby Union that it will appeal the James Horwill disciplinary decision following an extensive review of the case.
Australia captain Horwill was cited for a stamping contrary to Law 10.4(b) during the first half of the first Test between Australia and the British & Irish Lions in Brisbane on June 22.
The Judicial Officer determined that, on the balance of probabilities, that there was no act of foul play. Read the full written decision here.
As the 2013 British & Irish Lions Tour falls within the scope of the IRB merit-based appointment scheme approved by the IRB Council, under Regulation 17.22.2 the IRB has (since the May 2012 IRB Council decision) the right to appeal any decision arising from matches under the scheme.
Furthermore, given its duty to preserve player welfare at all levels of the Game, the IRB is compelled to further examine potential acts of foul play which either potentially or in reality impact on the preservation of player welfare.
It is important for the IRB to ensure amongst all stakeholders in the Game that there is full confidence that priority is given to player welfare and the values of the Game.
The IRB received the full written decision on Monday, June 24 and following a detailed review of the evidence and the written decision (as it does for all Tests under its jurisdiction) has notified the ARU within the 72 permissible hours that it will appeal the case.
The appeal will be heard by Graeme Mew (Canada) following the second Test between Australia and the British & Irish Lions. Horwill is free to play pending the outcome of the appeal.
Further details regarding the appeal hearing logistics will be announced shortly.
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