Super Rugby
Chaotic night leads to numerous citings
ESPN Staff
March 22, 2015
Sharks 12-11 Chiefs (video available in Australia only)
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After a chaotic night in Durban, four players have been cited for foul play during the Sharks one-point win over the Chiefs. Sharks captain Bismarck du Plessis and centre Francois Steyn and Chiefs hooker Hikawera Elliot were all red carded within the opening 30-minutes of the match, while Chiefs flanker Liam Messam was lucky to escape a yellow card but was later cited following the match.

The first to be red carded, Elliot was sent from the game in the 16th-minute for dangerously charging into the ruck, striking Sharks prop Tendai 'The Beast' Mtawarira on the back of the head with a flying shoulder. He was quickly joined by du Plessis two minutes later for kicking Chiefs No.8 Michael Leitch in the face.

The Sharks were down to just 13-men 10-minutes later when referee Angus Gardner ruled Steyn's tackle as a red card offence, and sent Steyn off in the 28th-minute for a dangerous lifting tackle.

Messam was cited after the match for a dangerous tackle in the 18th-minute, which the Citing Commissioner deemed met the red card threshold for foul play. While Chiefs wing Tom May has been issued a citing commissioner warning for a dangerous tackle in the 79th-minute when he tackled Cobus Reinach. A warning is given for foul play that is considered close to but not breaching a red card threshold by the citing commissioner.

Following the match Messam defended the red-carded players stating that none of them were "dirty players". "Rugby is a contact sport and that is the way it goes sometimes. None of those sent off are dirty players," he said.

All four players will face the SANZAR Duty Judicial Officer Adam Casselden during the week.

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