Attwood charges dismissed
England forward free to play after stamping charges are dropped
Last Updated: 09/06/10 3:26pm
Attwood: Free to play
England lock Dave Attwood has seen two stamping charges dismissed on a technicality.
The Gloucester forward had been cited for alleged stamping on scrum-half Josh Valentine and Mitch Chapman either side of half-time during England's 28-28 draw with the Australian Barbarians.
However, England's team management successfully argued that Australian citing commissioner Scott Nowland could not be considered an independent authority, and the charges were dropped.
The ARU statement read: "England team management successfully argued the hearing of two alleged stamping incidents involving Attwood could not proceed because the citing commissioner, as an Australian, was not an independent authority."
England's elite rugby director Rob Andrew explained: "You have to have an independent citing commissioner and judicial officer for non-international matches unless the two unions have agreed that you can have a non-independent citing commissioner, which we did not.
"We didn't even know it was an Australian citing commissioner until after the game."
Andrew said England would have probably refused even if they had been consulted, although he pointed out the unions did agree on the use of ARU referees for the midweek matches.
The IRB-appointed disciplinary team that will oversee England's two-Test series with the Wallabies will also take charge of the midweek game.