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Namibia’s Deysel given long ban for Dupont tackle

Namibia’s Johan Deysel has been suspended for at least five matches for the brutal tackle on Antoine Dupont that resulted in the France captain suffering a fractured cheekbone, World Rugby said on Tuesday.

The ban was originally 12 matches but due to mitigating factors it was reduced by half and he will have another game struck off for entering the Coaching Intervention Programme “to substitute the final match of the sanction.”

Deysel, 31, told the Independent Disciplinary Committee hearing he accepted the challenge on Dupont in the second-half of the 96-0 thrashing warranted a red card.

“The independent Committee categorised the act of foul play as being at the top end of the scale of seriousness of offending, having regard to the degree of recklessness involved in the offending, the vulnerability of the victim player and the significant injury to him,” the committee said in their judgement.

“The independent Committee determined that the applicable entry point is 12 matches.

“Having considered the mitigating factors, including admission of foul play and correctness of the red card at the first opportunity, his disciplinary record and apology to the player, the independent Committee reduced the sanction by the maximum mitigation of 50 per cent.”

Deysel’s World Cup is over but the France squad and the team’s fans are praying 2021 World Player of the Year Dupont’s tournament is not.

He underwent surgery following the incident in last Thursday’s Pool A match and is due to rejoin the squad later this week.

Les Bleus hope to have the influential scrum-half back for the quarter-finals, scheduled for the weekend of October 14-15.

They are likely to top their pool but they face a tough last-eight tie probably against champions South Africa.