Sharks Mapimpi

Makazole Mapimpi of the Sharks. Photo: SA Rugby

BREAKING: Mapimpi BANNED after eye gouge incident

Sharks wing Makazole Mapimpi has been banned for two weeks after being cited for an alleged eye-gouging incident.

Sharks Mapimpi

Makazole Mapimpi of the Sharks. Photo: SA Rugby

It’s been confirmed that Makazole Mapimpi will miss the Sharks’ final Champions Cup pool match against Harlequins this weekend after being found guilty of “reckless contact” with the eye area of an opponent.

The Springboks superstar was alleged to have made contact with the eye or eye area of the Bordeaux’s scrumhalf Maxime Lucu in the 36th minute of the match against Bordeaux last weekend.

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Mapimpi still travelled with the Sharks squad for this Saturday’s Heineken Champions Cup clash against Harlequins, but faced a hearing on Wednesday.

An independent Disciplinary Committee comprising Antony Davies (England), Chair, Leon Lloyd (England) and Donal Courtney (Ireland) heard submissions from Mapimpi, from the player’s legal representative, Attie Heyns, from the Sharks Team Manager, Trevor Barnes, and from the Sharks Head of Team Culture, André Barnard.

Evidence and submissions were also heard from Lucu and from the EPCR Disciplinary Officer, Liam McTiernan.

The committee upheld the citing complaint, finding that Mapimpi had made reckless contact with Lucu’s eye area which warranted a red card and it determined that the offending was at the low end of World Rugby’s sanctions, and four weeks was selected as the appropriate entry point.

Due to the player’s clear disciplinary record, it was decided to grant him the full 50% mitigation and the committee therefore reduced the sanction by two weeks before imposing a two-week suspension.

The Sharks have already reached the Round of 16

Backs — Aphelele Fassi, Ben Tapuai, Cameron Wright, Curwin Bosch, Grant Williams, Jaden Hendrikse, Lionel Cronje, Lukhanyo Am, Makazole Mapimpi, Marnus Potgieter, Rohan Janse van Rensburg, Thaakir Abrahams.

Forwards — Carlu Sadie, Dan Jooste, Eben Etzebeth, Fez Mbatha, Gerbrandt Grobler, Hanru Jacobs, Hyron Andrews, Kerron van Vuuren, Ntuthuko Mchunu, Ox Nche, Phepsi Buthelezi, Reniel Hugo, Sikhumbuzo Notshe, Siya Kolisi, Thomas du Toit, Vincent Tshituka.


Sharks duo Siya Kolisi and Bongi Mbonambi
Sharks hooker Bongi Mbonambi is an injury concern after he left the field during his side’s Heineken Champions Cup rout of Bordeaux Begles. Photo: PA.