Fillol given 14-week ban for spitting

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Stade Francais player Jerome Fillol has received a 14-week ban for spitting in Bath scrum-half Peter Stringer’s face.

The first-half incident happened during last Saturday’s Amlin Challenge Cup quarter-final between the clubs. Fillol admitted a charge of committing an act contrary to good sportsmanship when he appeared at an independent disciplinary hearing in Dublin yesterday. Fillol’s suspension will take into account the closed season, covering a ten-week period from 6 April until 16 June and then another four weeks between 15 July and 11 August.

Independent judicial officer, England’s Anthony Davis, found Fillol had been guilty of “an intentional, deliberate and grave act”.

Davis decided the offence warranted a top-end entry point in terms of punishment and considered 26 weeks as his punishment base before applying 12 weeks’ mitigation. “The judicial officer identified no aggravating factors,” European Rugby Cup said in a statement. “And after taking into account compelling mitigating factors, which included the genuine remorse expressed by the player at the hearing, as well as his exemplary record and strong character references, the judicial officer applied mitigation of 12 weeks, before imposing a sanction of 14 weeks.”

Fillol was reported by match citing commissioner Eugene Ryan.