29 Jul 2017

Williams appeals suspension for his red card

11:53 am on 29 July 2017

Sonny Bill Williams is to appeal the World Rugby decision that will prevent him from playing the opening game of the Rugby Championship.

Sonny Bill Williams after being shown the red card by referee Jerome Garces.

Sonny Bill Williams. Photo: Photosport

Williams was suspended for four weeks for a shoulder charge on Lions wing Anthony Watson - it was hoped he would be able to serve the ban before the Rugby Championship.

Yesterday World Rugby confirmed the suspension would run until 19 August, the day of the first Test against Australia in Sydney.

In a statement, New Zealand Rugby said Sonny Bill Williams has appealed the World Rugby Judicial Committee's decision not to include the All Blacks match on 11 August in the four week suspension.

On the 11th the All Blacks are set to play a game of three-halves against Counties Manukau and Taranaki as a part of their buildup to the Rugby Championship.

World Rugby said Williams had admitted he committed an act of foul play.

"The player had admitted that he committed an act of foul play contrary to Law 10.4 (g) which deals with dangerous charging, and he received the suspension of four weeks, equating to four meaningful matches as considered by the judicial committee."

Following due consideration, the disciplinary committee has ruled that Williams' suspension will extend up to and including 19 August, which is the day of the first game against Australia.

At this stage Williams is available for the second game against Australia in Dunedin on 26 August.