Payne's statement read "John regrets the incident happened at all. He has a long and unblemished professional rugby career spanning twelve seasons and would not be regarded by anybody including opponents as being a dirty player."
"He is very disappointed with the sanction, given that the committee accepted the action wasn't intentional yet decided the entry point for the offence to be at the higher range, the nine weeks reduced to six in mitigation."
The six week suspension will see him return on Saturday November 14th, the day before the International against Australia.
Munster will wait until they have received the written copy of the decision before deciding whether or not to appeal.