"No Ban Issued" All Blacks Lock Scott Barrett Cleared for Rugby World Cup After Red Card Against Springboks - Ruck

“No Ban Issued” All Blacks Lock Scott Barrett Cleared for Rugby World Cup After Red Card Against Springboks

New Zealand lock Scott Barrett is free to compete at the 2023 Rugby World Cup, and will face no ban despite being sent off against the Springboks at Twickenham. Barrett was shone a second yellow card last Friday evening, which gave him his marching orders in the All Blacks’ record 35-7 defeat.

The 29-year-old was initially sent to the sin bin after giving away a technical penalty, however the referee had previously issued the All Blacks with a team warning, with Barrett’s departure being collateral damage. After 10 minutes on the side-line the Crusader made his return, before being shown a second yellow card for a reckless clear-out in a ruck.

Barrett made contact with the head of South African hooker Malcolm Marx, and was promptly sent to the bunker with the challenge under review. Barrett’s subsequent departure for the rest of the game was inevitable for his second yellow card, yet the important detail is that the off-field review decided that the high tackle offence was not dangerous enough to warrant a red card, and any additional ban.

The bunker system has been a prominent feature of the 2023 Summer Nations Series, with England captain Owen Farrell and number eight Billy Vunipola both having on-field yellow cards upgraded to reds following the TMO’s off-field-review. The Saracens duo face bans for England’s Rugby World Cup opener against Argentina, as a result of their dangerous tackles.

Barrett’s fate came to light yesterday, when an independent judicial committee decided the second yellow card was ‘sufficient punishment’ for the second rower. “The player was sent off for two yellow cards, and the first of those yellow cards was for a technical offence following a team warning.” (via BBC Sport). Also, Barrett admitted to the offence, with mitigating circumstances in play regarding the initial contact with Marx’s arm and shoulder area.

Barrett will hope to be selected for New Zealand’s Rugby World Cup opener on September 8th, as the All Blacks take on host nation France for a blockbuster opening contest in Pool A. Ian Foster’s men have to bounce back following their record defeat, with the Rugby World Cup set to kick off in just 10 days.