The bizarre red card that has seen Bath substitute banned
Bath hooker Niall Annett found himself in a very strange position on Saturday being red carded by referee Tom Foley after a scrap with the opposing Bristol Bears players. What made this so strange was that he was not even playing at the time.
Following a Luke Morahan try in the corner, tempers boiled over with a melee ensuing on the field with Annett and Bristol fly-half Callum Sheedy at the heart of it. Sheedy was subsequently yellow carded, while Annett was dismissed entirely as his side narrowly lost 31-29 at Ashton Gate.
Annett, who arrived from Worcester Warriors this summer, took to Twitter soon after, writing: “Just want to apologise to everyone associated with BathRugby. Not how I saw my first game going and deeply embarrassed and disappointed in myself. Players, staff, fans and everyone else associated, sorry for my actions.”
Just want to apologise to everyone associated with @BathRugby . Not how I saw my first game going and deeply embarrassed and disappointed in myself. Players, staff, fans and everyone else associated, sorry for my actions.
— Niall Annett (@NiallAnnett2) September 10, 2022
To add insult to injury, Annett has now been banned for two matches for “acts contrary to good sportsmanship”, meaning he will miss upcoming fixtures against Sale Sharks and Wasps
An RFU statement reads: “The case of Bath Rugby player Niall Annett was heard yesterday by an independent disciplinary panel chaired by Sam Hillas KC (Chair) sitting with Daniel Gore and Olly Kohn.
“Annett received a red card for acts contrary to good sportsmanship, contrary to World Rugby Law 9.27, for running some distance to get involved in a melee during the match against Bristol Bears on 10 September. Annett accepted the charge.”
This means that the 31-year-old has already been banned before even playing a competitive game for Bath, which takes some doing. Here was the incident: