Saints skipper Wood handed six-week suspension

Tom Wood pleaded guilty to stamping (picture: Sharon Lucey)

Tom Wood pleaded guilty to stamping (picture: Sharon Lucey)

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Tom Wood has been hit with a six-week suspension - but will be available for the start of next season.

The Saints skipper was sent off in last Friday’s 23-22 Champions Cup play-off final win against Stade Français at Franklin’s Gardens.

Wood was seen to have stamped on Stade full-back Djibril Camara at a ruck and was dismissed by referee John Lacey.

The flanker was forced to attend an independent disciplinary hearing in London on Wednesday.

Wood pleaded guilty and the committee decided that the offence was at the top end of World Rugby’s sanctions and selected 12 weeks as the appropriate entry point.

Taking into account Wood’s guilty plea, expression of remorse and good disciplinary record, the committee reduced the sanction by the maximum of 50 per cent before imposing a six-week suspension.

Wood’s period of suspension will include England’s tour of Argentina and Saints’ warm-up matches in advance of the 2017/18 season.

He is therefore free to play on Monday, 28 August.

Both the player and EPCR have the right to appeal the decision.

Wood’s Saints team-mate Rory Hutchinson also attended an independent disciplinary hearing in London on Wednesday.

Hutchinson was handed a two-week ban for tackling Stade scrum-half Will Genia in the air during the second half of last Friday’s encounter.

The young centre was given a yellow card at the time of the incident, but was then cited by citing commissioner Peter Ferguson.

Hutchinson pleaded guilty and the committee decided that the offence was at the low end of World Rugby’s sanctions and selected four weeks as the appropriate entry point.

Taking into account Hutchinson’s guilty plea, his clean disciplinary record and his youth and inexperience, the committee reduced the sanction by the maximum of 50 per cent before imposing a two-week suspension.

As Saints have no matches in the coming weeks, Hutchinson will not be eligible for the Singha Premiership Rugby 7s on 28 and 29 July, and will be free to play on Monday, 31 July.

Both the player and EPCR have the right to appeal the decision.