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Rugby: All Blacks Sam Cane and Malakai Fekitoa cited after Ireland win

All Blacks pair Sam Cane and Malakai Fekitoa have been cited following yesterday's bruising 21-9 win over Ireland in Dublin.

Cane clashed with Ireland's Robbie Henshaw and the Leinster midfield back was carried from the field on a stretcher as a results. Fekitoa was sinbinned for a high tackle in the 48th minute when he went in high on Simon Zebo and received a yellow card.

World Rugby's Autumn International Disciplinary released a statement confirming the news.

"Sam Cane, the New Zealand flank forward, for allegedly tackling an opponent dangerously in the 11th minute of the first half of the match between Ireland and New Zealand at the Aviva Stadium (Law 10.4 (e)).

"Malakai Fekitoa, the New Zealand centre, for allegedly tackling an opponent dangerously in the same match (Law 10.4 (e)).

Video

"Disciplinary hearings for the players will be held in the next two days in front of independent disciplinary committees of three."

All Blacks coach Steve Hansen is adamant Cane is not guilty of any offence.

He said he had reviewed the incident on video since the game and it was clear the incident was a "head clash".

"The first contact is their heads hitting," he said.

Meanwhile, England second row Joe Launchbury has been cited for allegedly kicking an opponent during Saturday's victory over Fiji.

The dual citings will further fuel the outrage of Irish fans and media.

Former Ireland lock and No 8 Neil Francis, writing in the Irish Independent, kept up the attack on the All Blacks for their tactics today.

"Sam Cane shoulder-charged Henshaw, an act which left the Irish centre in distress and twitching on the ground. The tackle that I saw was a shoulder-charge which ended in contact with Henshaw's face. Irrespective of whether Cane attempted to complete a wrap is irrelevant - the point of contact was shoulder to face and that is a red card.

"Later in the second half Malakai Fekitoa's challenge on Simon Zebo was also worthy of a red. World Rugby issues these diktats on the sanctity of the head and the safety issues which predominate the modern game are allegedly their number one concern. Why their referees don't pay attention to what the governing body is saying is beyond me.

"Not only did the match officials get it wrong on the foul play, they got it wrong on all the other rule-breaking too. New Zealand conceded 14 penalties to Ireland's four yesterday. Can you call that indiscipline or do we call it cynicism? Every time Ireland got close to New Zealand's line they would kill the ball, not roll away or stray offside from the next recycle."

Sam Cane was cited for this tackle on  Robbie Henshaw. Photo / Getty Images
Sam Cane was cited for this tackle on Robbie Henshaw. Photo / Getty Images
Sam Cane was cited for this tackle on  Robbie Henshaw. Photo / Getty Images
Sam Cane was cited for this tackle on Robbie Henshaw. Photo / Getty Images
Sam Cane was cited for this tackle on  Robbie Henshaw. Photo / Getty Images
Sam Cane was cited for this tackle on Robbie Henshaw. Photo / Getty Images

- NZ Herald

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