I’m not sure if anyone has seen the video of the Northampton Saints player Calum Clark’s ‘challenge’ on the leicester player Rob Hawkins that broke his elbow. Hawkins is likely to spend a lot of time on the sidelines as a result and, with most of his limited club appearances being from the bench, could even be looking at an end to his time at Leicester.
Clark’s challenge was cynical in the extreme and was serving no purpose, particularly as it happened after the whistle. I think that Hawkins would be well within his rights to take legal action against Clark if it has a detrimental affect on his career and earnings, he has been stripped of his ability to play and compete for his place in the Leicester team.
I’ve played a lot of rugby, it’s a physical sport and am more than aware that fights break out and cheap shots happen. However, when these cause serious injury, the person guilty is culpable. If this happened at the amateur level to someone who, for example, was a serving police constable and was unable to fulfil his duties as a result, I would expect charges to be pressed. A friend of mine lost teeth when someone took a 20m run up and punched him during a scuffle that didn’t involve him. These incidents need to be stamped out and a long ban for Clark would send the correct message out to players at all levels. This type of behaviour isn’t welcome in the game.