Portugal’s Pinto banned for two matches for kung fu kick, Simoes cleared

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - Rugby World Cup 2023 - Pool C - Wales v Portugal - Allianz Riviera, Nice, France - September 16, 2023 Portugal's Vincent Pinto kicks the head of Wales' Josh Adams and is shown a yellow card by referee Karl Dickson REUTERS/Stephanie Lecocq/File Photo

SAINT-ETIENNE (Reuters) – Portugal winger Vincent Pinto has been banned for two games for kicking Wales’s Josh Adams in the head while jumping to catch a high ball in a World Cup match in Nice last weekend.

Pinto was shown a yellow card, later upgraded to red, for the incident late in the Pool C match and his argument that it failed to meet the threshold for dismissal fell on fallow ground at a judicial hearing on Tuesday.

The French-born 24-year-old will miss Saturday’s clash with Georgia in Toulouse and Portugal’s third pool game against Australia but will be able to play against Fiji on Oct. 8 if he undergoes a World Rugby coaching intervention programme.

There was better news on Tuesday for his team mate Rafael Simoes, who was cleared to play against Georgia after a disciplinary hearing cleared him of a dangerous tackle.

The number eight was cited after the 28-8 loss to Wales but, while admitting that he had committed a foul, successfully submitted that it did not meet the red-card threshold.

Portugal coach Patrice Lagisquet will name his team for the Georgia match on Thursday.

(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Toby Davis)

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