Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu appeal hearing

Wednesday 9 November 2011, 10:34PM

By Rugby World Cup 2011


Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu
Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu Credit: Rugby World Cup 2011

The International Rugby Board has announced the composition of the three-person Independent Appeal Committee that will hear Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu’s Appeal against a misconduct sanction handed down during Rugby World Cup 2011 in New Zealand.

The Appeal will be heard in London on November 20 by the Appeal Committee of Professor Lorne Crerar (Chair, Scotland), Graeme Mew (Canada) and Nicholas Davidson QC (New Zealand).

At an independent hearing in Auckland on October 15, Independent Judicial Officer upheld a RWCL misconduct charge against Fuimaono-Sapolu for comments made about referee Nigel Owens via the public social media network Twitter. Charges relating to breaches of the RWC/IRB Code of Conduct arising from such comments were also all upheld.

Fuimaono-Sapolu was given a sanction of a suspension from playing for six months (suspended for a period of two years) subject to compliance with the following conditions:

  • A full and unconditional apology to Nigel Owens and unconditional retraction of any criticism of him
  • A minimum of 100 hours Rugby community work in Samoa in support of the IRB High Performance Programme within the next 12 months
  • That the Player attends and passes a recognised Referee course within three months