Hogg apology inspired shorter ban
Stuart Hogg's heartfelt apology to Dan Biggar spared the Scotland full-back a longer ban following his red card shame against Wales.
The Glasgow Warriors player has been given a three-week ban following his dismissal in the Dark Blues' final RBS 6 Nations fixture in Cardiff.
Hogg was sent off 23 minutes into the Millennium Stadium clash after smashing his shoulder into the jaw of Dragons fly-half Biggar.
Hogg - whose team went on to suffer their heaviest ever defeat in the tournament after being reduced to 14 men as Wales stormed to a huge 51-3 victory - appeared before a disciplinary hearing in London and will now miss his club's next three RaboDirect Pro12 fixtures against Llanelli Scarlets, Ospreys and Benetton Treviso.
The 21-year-old apologised to Biggar, his team-mates and referee Jerome Garces - who initially showed him a yellow card before upgrading the punishment after the incident was replayed on the stadium's giant screens - after the match.
But i n a statement, the Six Nations disciplinary committee explained Hogg's punishment could have been worse.
It said: " The player did not contest the red card. The Disciplinary Committee, chaired by Mark McParland (Ireland), along with Jeremy Summers (England) and Achille Reali (Italy), having viewed the TV footage of the incident and considered representations by and on behalf of the player, determined that the player's actions constituted an act of foul play contrary to Law 10.4(f) [which relates to playing an opponent without the ball] and that it was in the mid-range of the IRB's sanctions for the type of offence, resulting an entry-point of a five-week playing suspension.
"The Disciplinary Committee found that there were no aggravating factors and granted the player a 40 per cent (two week) reduction to account for mitigating factors, including the player's remorse for the incident both on the day of the match and subsequently through the media. ."