Mike Brown given six-week ban for stamping

Fullback’s Harlequins career over ahead of next season’s move north to Newcastle

Mike Brown has been handed a six-week ban for stamping. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty

Mike Brown has been handed a six-week ban for stamping. Photograph: David Rogers/Getty

 

Mike Brown’s Harlequins career has been brought to an abrupt end after he was handed a six-week ban following his red card for stamping last weekend, ensuring he will miss the rest of the season.

Brown, who will join Newcastle next season, was initially given a 12-week ban for a stamp to the head of Wasps’ Tommy Taylor – reduced to six on mitigation – but with only four matches left of the regular season the 35-year-old will miss Harlequins’ run-in, even if they reach the Premiership final.

It is a desperate end to Brown’s illustrious career with the club he first appeared for in 2005, going on to make 351 appearances. Harlequins are currently in fourth place, nine points clear of Northampton in fifth and well-placed to reach the Premiership play-offs. Brown, however, will now play no part in their pursuit of the title he helped Harlequins win in 2012 – though he does have the right to appeal the verdict.

The disciplinary panel determined that Brown’s stamp warranted a top-end sanction, meaning a ban of 12 weeks but given it was the first red card of his career, and because he accepted the charge and showed “honesty and contrition” throughout the hearing he was awarded the maximum possible mitigation. His return-to-play date has not yet been finalised given it is unclear precisely when Harlequins’ season will end, so there is the chance Brown’s ban will extend into the start of his Newcastle career.

Meanwhile, the British & Irish Lions will be broadcast live on free-to-air TV for the first time in 28 years after it was announced Channel 4 will show the warm-up Test against Japan on June 36th. Channel 4 has also secured rights to show highlights of three Tests against South Africa.

The warm-up match – the Lions’ first on home soil since 2005 – is set to act as a key part of their preparations for the tour and while Sky Sports has secured rights for the eight matches in South Africa, Channel 4 will exclusively screen the Japan Test at Murrayfield next month. The fixture is on the same day as the Premiership final and while it is understood the Lions match will have an afternoon kick-off the two games will not clash.

The Channel 4 deal is a significant boost for the Lions, who according to the head coach Warren Gatland, are set to make a loss given the fact that crowds in South Africa will be significantly restricted – if they are allowed at all – with no hordes of travelling Lions supporters. In addition to the Japan match and Test highlights, All4 will also show highlights of the other tour matches in South Africa with the Lions set to confirm a revised schedule this week.

The Lions were last on terrestrial TV when ITV screened the 1993 tour of New Zealand but Channel 4’s move to bring them back to free-to-air TV is the latest in a drive by the broadcaster to improve its sports portfolio. Earlier this year Channel 4 broadcast live Test cricket, with coverage of England’s series in India, for the first time in 16 years. – Guardian

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.