No case to answer was the verdict by the Citing Commissioner in response to a referral by the Namibian coach following his team s 10-try 64-7 trouncing by Ireland.
Ireland coach Eddie O Sullivan greeted the verdict by saying: We are obviously delighted to hear the news that there is no case to answer. But to be perfectly honest, I never felt there was a case.
The outcome would be in accordance with general interpretation of a maul situation in which a Namibia player fell awkwardly as Ireland swept through in a well executed manoeuvre.
O Connell, who celebrated his 24th birthday today (Monday) was penalised on the recommendation of a touch judge and the fact that Australian referee, Andrew Cole saw fit to leave the punishment at that has now been further endorsed by the Citing Commissioner, who concurred that no willful intent occurred.
Eddie O Sullivan summed up the general reaction to the incident when he said: Paul tried to get over the player. I did not see any malice in it and to be honest if there was the touch judge and referee would have been harsher.
Tomorrow, Ireland depart Terrigal, 90 minutes north of Sydney, where they have been based for the past three weeks, and head to Adelaide where the team to play Argentina in the crunch Pool A tie on Sunday next, will be selected on Wednesday.
P.S. HAPPY BIRTHDAY PAUL!
From all at Munster Rugby.