Danny Cipriani escapes sanction

England’s Danny Cipriani has escaped sanction from the RFU following his fine from the courts and from his club when charged with common assault, larceny, assault on police resisting arrest and being disorderly on licensed premises during Gloucester pre-season tour of Jersey. Cipriani contested the charge from the RFU; the panel decided he had already been punished enough but stood by their decision to charge him.

 Panel Chair Gareth Graham said:

“Danny Cipriani is expected to behave in line with the core values of the game which include respect and discipline. Those core values are not empty words or slogans as the panel were reminded during the hearing.

By his guilty plea before the criminal court, Mr Cipriani accepts that he behaved in a way that, in the panel’s view, fell below the standard of behaviour expected of a rugby player. The panel were supported in reaching that decision by Gloucester Rugby’s own internal disciplinary hearing finding that his behaviour fell below the standard that the club expects.

Mr Cipriani is a role model and by committing an act of common assault and by resisting arrest, the panel find his actions are prejudicial to the interests of the game.”

 Gloucester Rugby released at statement, CEO Stephen Vaughan commented:

 “Whilst disappointed at the verdict this evening, we accept the decision of the panel, particularly concerning the way Gloucester Rugby have handled the matter. We believe that the panel’s decision not to impose any additional penalty endorses our approach. We now look forward to the start of the season and putting this incident behind us.”

 Cipriani, who moved to Gloucester from fellow Premiership club Wasps in the summer, was due to make his debut for the Cherry and Whites on Saturday 1st September in their Premiership opener against Northampton Saints at Kingsholm Stadium.  This latest misdemeanour will add to a long list of previous incidents that will undoubtedly impact on his chances of being picked for England in the future. Understandably it can be concluded that Eddie jones will be unimpressed with Cipriani’s actions however Jones did hand the 30‑year‑old fly-half his first England start in 10 years on the summer tour of South Africa. His recall came with a warning from Jones about his future behaviour “If he’s on the front page for any other reason [other than rugby], he won’t be with us,” said Jones.

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