By Ali Stokes
The RFU have announced that Sale Sharks duo Chris Ashton and Alexandru Tarus will sit before an independent disciplinary panel this Thursday (August 23) following the red cards they were issued during a pre-season fixture against French side Castres Olympique.
Ashton was sent off during the 46th minute for a tip tackle on Rory Kockott contrary to law 9.18 (A player must not lift an opponent off the ground and drop or drive that player so that their head and/or upper body make contact with the ground).
Tarus was shown a red by referee Roman Poite in the 73rd minute for dangerous play in a ruck contrary to law 9.20.
Both hearings will take place in London on Thursday 23 August, Ashton’s at 13:30 with Tarus’ following immediately after. The panel will be chaired by Richard Whittam QC, Becky Essex and one other panel member to be confirmed.
Should Ashton face a ban following Thursday's hearing, the 39-times-capped England international may find himself unavailable for selection for national Head Coach Eddie Jones. An entry-level ban for dangerous tackles contravening with regulation 9.18 is 6-weeks, with a mid-level of 10-weeks and a top-end of 14+ weeks.
With England's Autumn International squad named on the 20th of September, Ashton may yet again find himself ruled out of international duty.
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