Spanish players handed lengthy bans

Another setback for Spain players
Another setback for Spain players

Rugby Europe has confirmed that five Spain players have been handed bans following the controversy-marred game between Spain and Belgium.

Spain, who were shocked with 18-10 defeat by Belgium in Brussels lodged a complaint last month with Spain coach Santiago Santos accusing referee Vlad Iordachescu on constantly stopping the play when they had the momentum and also pointed out a number of decisions given against them.

Following the game, there was a huge confrontation between the Spanish players and referee Iordachescu. With news on ineligible players participated in the game surfacing, World Rugby has set up investigations into the 2017 and 2018 Rugby Europe Championship that served as a platform for the 2019 World Cup qualification.

Rugby Europe announced that its judicial committee had banned Guillaume Rouet and Sebastien Rouet for 36 and 43 weeks respectively for physically and verbally abusing the referee while Pierre Barthere, Lucas Guillaume, and fly-half Mathieu Beli have been suspended for 14 weeks for ‘threatening actions/words at a match official’.

The ban applies to both domestic and international fixtures, though the players have the right to appeal against the sanction.