Cardiff Blues' Matthew Rees banned for seven weeks after stamp

Matthew Rees
Matthew Rees has won 61 caps for Wales, scoring two tries

Cardiff Blues hooker Matthew Rees has been suspended for seven weeks following his red card for stamping on Harlequins number eight Nick Easter.

Former Wales captain Rees, 34, was sent off during the Blues' Challenge Cup defeat by Quins.

Judicial officer Pat Barriscale issued Rees with a 12-week ban but reduced the penalty because of Rees' guilty plea and "clean disciplinary record".

Rees can return on 11 January 2016 and has the right to appeal the decision.

In the meantime, he will miss the Blues' European Challenge Cup double-header against Montpellier and their Christmas Pro12 derby fixtures.

Under World Rugby's sanctions for foul play, low-end suspensions for stamping last up to two weeks, mid-range five weeks and top-end bans can last between nine and 52 weeks.

At Wednesday's hearing in London, Barriscale decided the offence was at the top end but reduced the sanction, also taking into account Rees' "timely expression of remorse to Easter".

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