Ex England captain leaps to Owen Farrell’s defence with controversial take
Anyone defending Owen Farrell at the moment, or the decision to overturn his red card from Saturday, is outnumbered. Not just slightly outnumbered, hugely outnumbered. In fact, there have been very few, if any, decisions in rugby’s history that have bound so many people together in agreement as much as the objection to Farrell’s no ban.
That means anyone supporting Farrell is going to stand out quite a bit at the moment, but there are some. Former England rugby league captain Sam Tomkins is one of those people.
The Catalan Dragons star put his neck on the line on Tuesday after the Farrell verdict came out, writing on X: “Common sense has prevailed.”
Tomkins went on to elaborate on this statement, saying: “I don’t think I’m a lone voice. It was a clearly accidental high tackle. No I definitely don’t think that should be a red card.”
Common sense has prevailed 🙌🏻 https://t.co/87FQAkAE3G
— sam tomkins (@samtomkins1) August 15, 2023
Here were the results of the hearing: “The independent Judicial Committee consisting of Adam Casselden SC – Chair, John Langford and David Croft, all from Australia, heard the case, considering all the available evidence and submissions from the player and his representative.
“The player acknowledged that whilst he had committed an act of foul play, he denied that the act was worthy of a red card. After reviewing all the evidence, questioning the player in detail and hearing submissions from the player’s representative, the Committee concluded that the Foul Play Review Officer was wrong, on the balance of probabilities, to upgrade the yellow card issued to the player to a red card.
“The Committee determined, when applying World Rugby’s Head Contact Process, that mitigation should be applied to the high degree of danger found by the Foul Play Review Officer. The Committee found that a late change in dynamics due to England #2’s interaction in the contact area brought about a sudden and significant change in direction from the ball carrier. In the Committee’s opinion, this mitigation was sufficient to bring the player’s act of foul play below the red card threshold.”