RUGBY: Lions forward banned for eight games for ‘gouging’ offence

Conor Crown attacks for the Lions against Bromsgrove. Picture: Mick Sutterby

Conor Crown attacks for the Lions against Bromsgrove. Picture: Mick Sutterby

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Peterborough Lions fiery second row forward Marius Andrijauskas has received an eight-match ban for making contact with an opponent’s eye.

The Lithuanian international received his marching orders in the game against Birmingham two weeks ago and was called before an RFU disciplinary hearing last week to answer an ‘eye gouging’ charge.

The penalty if found guilty of gouging is a 12-match ban but after watching a video of the incident the disciplinary committee halved Andrijauskas’s sentence to six games. But they did add on another two games when taking his previous disciplinary record into account.

“The ruling was right and we have no complaints,” said Lions chairman Andy Moore. “They saw that although Marius put his hands on an opponent’s face it was not an actual gouging.”

That means Andrijauskas will miss the rest of this season’s games but the Bretton-based club are hoping to have him back in action at the start of next season.

Moore added: “We have three league games left and then Marius would have almost certainly been included in the East Midlands side for the County Championships in May. There’s also an international match he’ll miss so come next season we reckon he’ll have missed his eight games.”

On Saturday Andrijauskas was one of eight first-choice Lions players to miss the match at Bromsgrove - either through injury or unavailability.

But with a makeshift squad the city side battled their way to a 20-17 win thanks to tries by Chris Cutts, Ben Taylor and De La Rey Veenendaal.

“We were down to the bare bones so considering the side we had out I was really pleased to get a win,” added Moore. “In fact, I was absolutely astounded. The boys that came in certainly stepped up to the plate.”

CHARITY GAME

There’s a charity game taking place at Thorney on Saturday (kick-off 3pm).

Peterborough Welsh are taking on Thorney in a bid to raise money for Thorpe Hall. There is a barbecue and entertainment for all the family.