TUPAI BANNED FOR THREE WEEKS
Bedford Blues will be without second row forward Paul Tupai for the games against Llanelli, Rotherham and Nottingham after he was banned for three weeks by the RFU for striking an opponent during the Greene King IPA Championship fixture against London Scottish on Wednesday 1st January.
Tupai appeared before a disciplinary panel on Tuesday evening along with London Scottish prop Eric Fry who faced a charge of making contact with Tupai’s eye ahead of the incident for which the former Samoan lock was red-carded.
Tupai, who pleaded guilty to his charge, will miss two British & Irish Cup games along with the home league fixture against Nottingham. He is free to play in the game against Leeds on Sunday 2nd February.
Speaking about the ban, Blues Director of Rugby Mike Rayer said: “We will wait for the written judgment to come out before we decide our next step. Toops has always played the game on the edge, there is no doubt about that and whilst we completely accept you can’t go around punching people on the field, we feel in this instance there were extreme mitigating factors.
“I’d also like to add that Paul Tupai has been a superb professional for this club and a brilliant role model, not just for our aspiring players but also the senior guys. The standards and work ethic he sets are truly remarkable and I’m sure he’ll be chomping at the bit again once he has served his ban.”