Luke Gale now knows his fate following a lengthy trial hearing tonight.
Hull FC were hit with the news that Gale could be out for as many as eight matches following two separate charges in the Black and Whites’ defeat to St Helens on Saturday afternoon.
The game, broadcast live on Channel 4, kicked off at 12.30pm and was met with a horrific weather deluge as both teams tried their best to play expansive rugby.
Unfortunately, Gale as Hull’s captain was sent off in the 32nd minute for high studs on Saints’ Jonny Lomax.
That charge sees the halfback given a Grade D charge: “Behaves in any way contrary to the true spirit of the game (includes Dangerous Contact) – Other contrary behaviour Grade D.”
A Grade D charge can give anywhere between three and five-match bans.
If that charge wasn’t hefty enough, Gale was also cited as lifting the injured player – Lomax – in the action of the latter getting treatment.
That yielded a Grade C charge: “Behaves in any way contrary to the true spirit of the game (includes Dangerous Contact) – Other contrary behaviour Grade C.”
But, Gale will now miss Hull FC’s next five games following this evening’s independent tribunal hearing.
Gale was referred to tribunal by the Match Review Panel for a Grade D ‘high studs’ offence committed during last Saturday’s Betfred Super League match against St Helens. He also contested the panel’s grading (C) of a related offence – the lifting of an injured player – and the imposition of a three-match penalty notice.
Prior to the hearing, and with Match Review Panel approval, all parties agreed that there would be a single sanction covering both charges. Following pleas of mitigation from Gale and the club, the tribunal decided to impose a five-match suspension.