Rugby Union

A less than pleasant clinch.

England teammates James Haskell and Joe Marler's scrap during Harlequins vs Wasps

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Football News

It all got a bit heated on Sunday in the Premiership match-up between Wasps and Harlequins. 

During a scrum in the 20th minute, Wasps flanker James Haskell and Harlequin prop Joe Marler embroiled each other in a vicious clinch.

The Lions teammates proceeded to pull at each other until eventually separated.

But, as Haskell walked away, Marler sprayed water at him. Things then came to a head when Haskell rushed Marler and grabbed him by the throat.

The action saw Haskell sent off. He claimed he only retaliated after 27-year-old Marler choked him with his scrum cap and squirted water in his face.

'It's not allowed,' said the 32-year-old former Wasps captain.

Marler today was handed a commissioner's warning for what he did on Sunday in recognition that the England player deserved a yellow card at the time.

A video of the incident clearly shows him pulling at Haskell's scrum cap.

Marler escaped a ban as the offence was not serious enough to merit a red card. The warning will remain on his record for five years, and any future disciplinary hearings will take it into consideration. 

Marler, who was not sent off at the time, remained on the pitch until the second half when he left with a rib injury.

Wasps v Harlequins - Aviva Premiership

Dai Young, the Wasps Director of Rugby, was quick to come to Haskell's defence, saying: “If someone rips your hat off and squirts water in your face, what do you expect? I thought it was very harsh on Hask.

"There comes a time when you’ve got to look at the guys who spark these things off. Of course someone is going to take exception to someone ripping their hat off and squirting water in their face.”

If a player accumulates three yellow cards in one season they will either be banned for one game or face a disciplinary hearing.

You can watch the video of Haskell and Marler below, and see what happened between the two at full-time.

Marler has previously received a two-week ban and a £20,000 fine when he called Wales’ Samson Lee a “Gypsy boy” during a 2016 Six Nations match.

Within a month of that incident, he was banned for two weeks after kicking Grenoble's Arnaud Héguy in the head.

Fortunately for England fans, the two reconciled at the close of the match.

New Zeland Rugby
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