All Blacks centre suspended for entire Rugby Championship

Chiefs and All Blacks midfielder Anton Lienert-Brown has been suspended for three weeks and will miss the entire Rugby Championship.

He has been banned after being cited for a dangerous tackle during the Super Rugby final defeat to the Crusaders last Saturday in Hamilton.

Lienert-Brown made head on head contact with Crusaders wing Dallas McLeod when making a tackle.

McLeod failed the Head Injury Assessment and was removed from the game.

Lienert-Brown was yellow carded by referee Ben O'Keefe at the time, but was later cited with the incident deemed to have med the red card threshold.

Lienert-Brown has been suspended for 3 weeks, up to and including 29 July.

He will miss the All Blacks Rugby Championship opener in Argentina next weekend as well as the test against South Africa in Auckland on 15 July and the test against Australia on 29 July in Melbourne.

The SANZAAR Foul Play Review Committee of Michael Heron KC (Chairman), Stefan Terblanche and John Langford assessed the case.

In his finding, Foul Play Review Committee Chair Michael Heron KC ruled the following:

"Having conducted a detailed review of all the available evidence, including all camera angles and additional evidence, including from the player and submissions from his legal representative, Aaron Lloyd, the Foul Play Review Committee upheld the citing under Law 9.13."

"With respect to sanction, the Foul Play Review Committee held the act of foul play was reckless, with direct head-to-head contact made, high force and no significant mitigating factors present. The FPRC found the incident was dangerous and, after considering the relevant factors, decided the foul play merited a mid-range entry point of 6 weeks. Taking into account mitigating factors, including the Player's exemplary record and guilty plea, the Foul Play Review Committee reduced the suspension by three weeks."

"The player is therefore suspended for 3 weeks, up to and including 29 July 2023."

"In addition to the 3 weeks' suspension, the FPRC has determined that the player is granted access in the application for the World Rugby Coaching Intervention Programme".