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Disciplinary Item

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Case Number ON/247/13
Name James Mendeika
Club London
Shirt Number 29
Match London v St Helens
Competition Super League
Date 20/04/13
Incident considered Use of knees in the 22nd minute
Decision Charge
Details of Charge / Reason for NF Rule: 15.1(c) Detail – Drops Knees First Grade B
Range of Recommended Sanctions in relation to Charged Grade* 1-2
Date of Disciplinary Committee 30/04/13
Evidence provided DVd On Field Report
 
Decision On Charge
Player plea Not guilty
Summary of CM's submissions on the Charge / evidence Following a Match Review Panel meeting held on 29 April 2013, you are charged with misconduct for a breach of Law 15.1(c) during the above Match. The Panel reviewed an incident which occurred in approximately the 22nd minute of the Match. You were placed On Report by the Match Referee following the incident. In the Panel’s opinion, you dropped your knees towards an opponent after he had scored a try and struck that opponent in thigh area with your knee whilst he was on the ground. The Panel believed this was unnecessary; reckless and had the potential to cause your opponent injury. In accordance with the RFL’s On Field Sentencing Guidelines, the Panel consider that such offence is a Grade B offence (Drops knees first on an opponent on the ground). If found to have committed the offence, again in accordance with the On Field Sentencing Guidelines, the normal suspension range for such offence is from a 1 to a 2 match suspension. In addition the Tribunal has the power to impose such fine as it considers reasonable. Under the RFL Disciplinary Guidelines you are eligible to take an Early Guilty Plea due to your previous disciplinary record. If you wish to take this option you will receive a 1 match suspension from midnight on Tuesday 30 April 2013. Please advise Gavin Wild of the RFL Operations Department (email: gavin.wild@rfl.uk.com telephone: 0113 237 5023) if you wish to make an Early Guilty Plea before 11a.m on Tuesday 30 April 2013.
Summary of Player's submissions on the Charge / evidence Hearing conducted via Skype with Head Coach Tony Rea and player. Player pleads not guilty concedes there was contact with the players knee to the opponent but this was due to momentum as he was sliding towards the opponent trying to get at the ball. The player was scrambling across the line trying to get his arms under the ball to prevent a try. Once the player sees the ball has been put down he tries to draw back from his lunge and pulls his arms back to try and get over the top of the opponent. No swinging knee or intent to cause injury. Contact was unavoidable and accidental. Player has no previous disciplinary history and was eligible to take an EGP but felt the contact was accidental and wanted to maintain his good record.
Decision Not guilty
Reasons for Decision The tribunal have carefully considered this matter and viewed the DVD on numerous occasions in full time and frame by frame. The submissions made by the Coach and the player have carefully been taken into consideration. The tribunal are satisfied this was not a deliberate act. The offence is graded as reckless but the tribunal feel the player was trying to get to the ball to prevent a try. The DVD shows the player sliding towards the opponent and the tribunal feel that he was committed but did try to prevent contact by pulling his arms back. Unfortunately contact did follow and the opponent was injured but this tribunal feel the contact was unavoidable and accidental and as such feel the player on this occasion should have the benefit of the doubt and find him not guilty.
 
Decision On Sanction (where found to have committed Misconduct)
Summary of CM's submissions on the appropriate sanction
Summary of Player's submissions on the appropriate sanction
Aggravating Factors
Mitigating Factors
Reasons for Decision
Suspension
Fine
Warning