yle Sinckler is free to take his place on the British and Irish Lions’ bench for the final Test against South Africa on Saturday after he was cleared of biting the Springbok lock Franco Mostert.
Sinckler was the only player on either side to be cited during an ill-tempered Second Test, and was hauled in front of an Independent Disciplinary Panel today.
The allegation stemmed from an incident in the 64th minute of the Lions’ 27-9 defeat, when Sinckler and Mostert were both at the base of a ruck. Footage showed Mostert attempting to tell the referee about what had happened.
Sinckler denied the charge, and was cleared.
A World Rugby release said: “The independent Disciplinary Committee chaired by Adam Casselden SC (Australia), joined by former international players David Croft and John Langford (both Australia), considered all the available evidence, including multiple broadcast angles, submissions from the player and his representative and expert witness testimony.
“The player denied that he had committed an act of foul play worthy of a red card. Having reviewed all the evidence, the committee deemed that on the balance of probabilities, it could not be satisfied that the player committed an act of foul play. On that basis, the committee dismissed the citing and the player is free to play again immediately.”
Gatland said he had seen nothing suggesting that Sinckler was guilty.
“That’s being dealt with at the moment,” he said. “He’s denied anything and we’re waiting to hear the decision. Sometimes those sorts of things happen, there’s nothing clear on any of the video evidence I’ve looked at, so we’ll just wait and see what comes back after the hearing.”