In the 45th minute of the France-Namibia match, Namibian centre Johan Deysel collided, head to head, Antoine Dupont, the scrum-half of Les Bleus. For this bad gesture, he had received a red card, after using the bunker. On Tuesday, an independent Disciplinary Commission suspended him for six matches, a sanction that will be reduced by a week if he follows World Rugby's tackle training programme.
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The International Federation said in a statement: "After taking into account mitigating circumstances, including immediate acknowledgement of misconduct and sanction, the player's exemplary disciplinary record and apologies to the player who was the victim of the foul, the Commission applied the maximum reduction of 50% of the sanction." The minimum penalty he faced was 12 games. He will miss Namibia's final game on Wednesday against Uruguay.
While Antoine Dupont has since been launched in a race against time to return from the quarter-finals (a priori against South Africa, who was beaten Saturday by Ireland), Johan Deysel - who had been the target of insults and cyberharassment on social networks - had immediately apologized to the captain of the Blues.
"Everything happened very fast and I couldn't place my head fast enough, which resulted in a shock to the head"
I would like to extend my best wishes to Antoine Dupont. It's clear that I didn't want to hurt him," he said. Everything happened very quickly and I couldn't place my head fast enough, which resulted in a shock to the head. I know the rules and I knew right away that I was at fault." And the former player of Colomiers in Pro D2 adds: "I spoke with the coach Fabien Galthié immediately after the match and I sent my best wishes and apologies to Antoine, personally and through the doctor of the France team. He is a great player and a great personality and I wish him a speedy recovery.»
In the official podcast of the competition, French second-row Paul Willemse also defended the Namibian captain. "I played with him at the U18s, with Namibia. He was a teammate and he's still a friend. If there's anyone who didn't want to do something like that, it's him. He is disgusted, acknowledged the second-line of Montpellier. I leave him alone because I know he is disgusted. He knows he is retiring after the World Cup. He has the balls. I know what it's like to play on a team that takes 90 points. You're a little desperate, so you're trying stuff...»