Super League: Leeds Rhinos coach Brian McDermott relieved at Danny McGuire ruling
Last Updated: May 15, 2013 10:14am
Danny McGuire: Will now be available to face St Helens on Monday
Leeds Rhinos coach Brian McDermott was relieved that Danny McGuire avoided a ban for punching during the Challenge Cup defeat at Huddersfield.
McGuire, who was not eligible to submit and early plea because of a previous offence, was found guilty of Grade A punching in the Rhinos' 24-8 loss at the John Smith's Stadium on Saturday.
A Rugby Football League disciplinary panel fined McGuire £300 and warned the 30-year-old stand-off as to his future conduct.
No suspension means he is available for Monday's home Super League clash with St Helens.
"There's not been many not guilty verdicts over the past 18 months," McDermott told the Yorkshire Evening Post.
"I think that's a result of them being selective about which incidents they call up - therefore if you are in there it is usually for something genuine.
"We're happy with the no ban, it was a fair hearing and it's pleasing the disciplinary panel listened to what we had to say.
"The disciplinary committee have their hands tied a bit. The game takes a no-tolerance approach to punching.
"I understand what they are saying, they don't condone punching and I whole-heartedly agree with that - but in a court of law if someone punches you squarely in the face you are allowed to defend yourself."
"I understand what they are saying, they don't condone punching and I whole-heartedly agree with that - but in a court of law if someone punches you squarely in the face you are allowed to defend yourself.
"Someone decided to punch him and he was defending himself - and he got a black eye as a result of it."
Huddersfield's Leroy Cudjoe was charged with a similar offence from the same incident and also escaped a ban after submitting an early guilty plea.
Giants' Joe Wardle, who was sent-off for punching Carl Ablett, also made an early guilty plea to a more serious Grade C charge and was given an automatic two-match suspension.