Worcester Warriors confident of avoiding potential points penalty

Jim O'Toole
Jim O'Toole was appointed as the Warriors' new chief executive in December

Worcester Warriors chief executive Jim O'Toole does not expect any additional punitive measures over a minor breach of Rugby Football Union rules.

They were fined £1,000 for not telling London Scottish they were wearing Global Positioning System (GPS) devices under their shirts during a game.

The club, also given a suspended two-point penalty, chose not to appeal.

"We're confident there'll be no reason for a points deduction to come into effect," O'Toole told BBC Sport.

"We will follow all necessary protocols with opposition teams and the RFU."

The Warriors have been wearing GPS tracking devices, which let the coaching staff know how far players have run during a game, since their days in the Premiership, where it is standard practice among all clubs.

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Analysis - BBC Hereford & Worcester sports editor Trevor Owens:

"Warriors won't appeal, but they will be asking some fairly pointed questions, among which will be why they weren't informed of the date for the committee's hearing and offered the chance to make representations. They are also concerned that the committee suggested they had refused to remove the equipment without hearing witnesses from the club.

"They maintain that at no time were they asked to remove the GPS units. They also want to know how it was that the RFU failed to notify the club that London Scottish had refused to give their consent to the use of GPS equipment."

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Worcester and this season's title rivals Bristol are the only two sides known to use the GPS system on a regular basis in the Championship, as it is an expensive luxury item that most clubs at that level cannot afford.

But Worcester, by way of formality, should have informed London Scottish that they were wearing them, and the Exiles chose to complain to the RFU about the matter following their 34-17 home defeat by the Warriors on 20 December.

Meanwhile, Warriors have made just two changes to the squad that hammered Nottingham 58-3 as they look for a club record 21st consecutive win against Rotherham this Saturday.

Dean Hammond comes in for Chris Pennell with Ben Howard switching to full-back, while Jonny Arr returns at scrum-half.

Former Rotherham captain Charlie Mulchrone, who scored a brace of tries in last weekend's win at Nottingham, will be on the bench.

Warriors will be playing in their limited-edition pink shirts for their annual Acorns Charity Matchday.

Worcester: Howard; Hammond, Stelling, Symons, Biggs; Mills, Arr; Bower, Annett, Rees, Williams, Thomas, Senatore, Betty, van Velze (capt).

Replacements: Creevy, Rapava Ruskin, Schonert, O'Shea, Mulchrone, Mieres, Fatiaki.

Rotherham: Scanlon; Keating, Hayes, Cooke, Wilson; McKinney, White; Hislop, Cruse (capt), Tampin, Maddison, Robinson, Argyle, Rieder, Morris.

Replacements: Preece, Williams, Thiede, Holmes, Birch, Barrett, Davies.

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