Stringer ‘disgusted’ by spitting incident
Stade Francais’s Jerome Fillol looks set to be cited for the offence
Amlin Challenge Cup Quarter-Final, Recreation Ground, Bath, England 6/4/2013Bath vs Stade Francais Paris Bath’s Peter Stringer tackles Aled De Malmanche of Stade Francais at the Rec. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Lorraine O'Sullivan
Former Ireland scrumhalf Peter Stringer admits he was “disgusted and angry” after appearing to be spat at during Bath’s Amlin Challenge Cup 36-20 defeat to Stade Francais at the Recreation Ground.
Stade Francais’s Jerome Fillol looks set to become the first professional player to be cited for spitting at an opponent after television cameras caught the French scrumhalf spitting in the face of Stringer.
European Rugby Cup officials are to investigate the complaint that could see Fillol facing a lengthy ban, while IRB chief executive Brett Gosper tweeted: “Spitting on Stringer should be punished to the full extent of the law. #NotRugby.”
The independent citing officer, Ireland’s Eugene Ryan, has 50 hours from kick-off to decide whether to cite Fillol for the 25th-minute incident at the Rec.
Yesterday, Stringer tweeted: “Disgusted at what happened yesterday in the game. No place for it in rugby or any walk of life.”
Stringer and Fillol had already exchanged words before they clashed. Television replays showed a verbal exchange before a scrum and Fillol then aimed a spit in the face of the on-loan Munster man.
Following the game, Stringer said: “That’s never happened to me before in my career and there’s no place for it in rugby. It’s about as low as anyone can possibly go and I’m still a bit raw after being in the receiving end. I was a bit rattled for a while but then you try not to dwell on it and get on with the game. It’s out of my hands now.”
Bath have made a formal complaint over the incident during the first half. Bath coach Toby Booth said: “Peter is very angry. I didn't see the incident but I would be disappointed, as I’m sure everyone would be, if it’s proved to be true because there’s no place for it at all.”
Stade Francais declined to comment and claimed they were unaware of the incident when they left The Rec .
Under the IRB regulation 10.4 (l), the offence carries a four-week suspension for what is regarded a low end incident, rising to seven to mid-level and a at least 11 weeks, with a maximum of 52 weeks, for the worst offenders.