SOUTH African hooker Bismarck du Plessis is unlikely to face further punishment for his offences against the All Blacks after the International Rugby Board admitted French referee Romain Poite made an “unfortunate” mistake.
Du Plessis was sent off early in the second half after a second yellow card offence during their 29-15 loss to New Zealand in a Rugby Championship Test in Auckland on Saturday.
However, following a review of the incidents, the IRB has deemed that Poite was incorrect to issue a yellow card to du Plessis for the first incident in the 17th minute.
In a statement, the IRB said Poite had accepted the tackle on All Blacks first five-eighth Dan Carter, which forced the star off the field with a shoulder injury, was within the laws of the game.
“Just as players and coaches make mistakes, the decision was an unfortunate case of human error by the match officials, who, having reviewed the match, fully recognise and accept that they made a mistake in the application of law,” the statement said.
There was no comment about the second offence, an elbow to the neck of All Blacks flanker Liam Messam.
Du Plessis is to appear before a Sanzar judicial hearing on Tuesday.