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Ashton cited over Tuilagi clash

Northampton and England wing Chris Ashton has been cited for an act contrary to good sportsmanship, the Rugby Football Union have announced.

Ashton faces an RFU disciplinary hearing in London on Tuesday after being reported by citing officer Mike Rafter.

The complaint is that Ashton pulled Leicester wing Alesana Tuilagi by his hair and dragged him from the field of play during Northampton's Aviva Premiership defeat against the Tigers at Welford Road on Saturday.

Ashton's action sparked a touchline brawl that ended with referee Wayne Barnes sending off Tuilagi and Northampton's England flanker Tom Wood.

Tuilagi and Wood, who were both dismissed for striking, will also appear before RFU disciplinary chiefs.

And it could prove an expensive day for Northampton, who face a critical Heineken Cup game against French club Castres next weekend as they look to revive their European campaign.

Wood's back-row colleague Phil Dowson has also been summoned after being cited for a dangerous tackle on Saracens back Alex Goode in a Premiership game at Franklin's Gardens nine days ago.

Ashton, Wood and Dowson could all be banned as Northampton approach a busy period of games that sees them playing Castres home and away, followed by Bath on Christmas Eve and Newcastle on New Year's Day.

No other citings, though, have emanated from the Northampton versus Leicester incident despite several players from both sides being involved.


From Belfast Telegraph