Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 2 October 2014

Ashton could miss England Test opener

Chris Ashton has received three yellow cards this season, meaning he must attend a hearing

Chris Ashton is in danger of being banned from the start of England's QBE autumn international series after he was called to appear at a disciplinary hearing in London tonight.

Ashton received a post-match level one citing for a dangerous tackle on his former Northampton team-mate Vasily Artemyev in last Saturday's Aviva Premiership match at Franklin's Gardens.

The citing counts on Ashton's record as a yellow card, taking his tally for the season to three and triggering a disciplinary hearing.

The Saracens wing was shown yellow cards for dangerous charging in the matches against London Irish on September 1 and Exeter Chiefs on September 23.

A Rugby Football Union disciplinary panel of Jeff Blackett, Jeremy Summers and Peter Budge will consider the matter in London this evening.

Ashton has been in this situation before, during his first season with Northampton in the old National League One.

On that occasion, he was banned for one week.

If the RFU's disciplinary panel decide to impose a suspension on this occasion, it would not apply to weeks when he is inactive.

Ashton was not among the England players released for Premiership duty this weekend. The next match he is due to play is England's Test against Fiji on November 10.

The RFU disciplinary hearing is scheduled to start at 7pm.

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