Why Super League star has been hit with a ban and a fine

The Match Review Panel have delivered their verdict of the action from Round 13 of the Betfred Super League but only one player has been banned.

It was a brilliant round of action headlined by a feisty affair between Leeds Rhinos and St Helens.

In the 76th minute of the game a mass pile in was sparked by a Sam Walters error with an altercation between James McDonnell and Jonny Lomax the epi-centre.

McDonnell was sent off after the touch judge said he saw a punch from McDonnell in the altercation.

He is the only player banned from the weekend’s action as he was hit with a two match ban and a fine.

The panel explains the ban in the minutes as: “Punching – One on One – Contact to the Head.”

This is despite no clear footage of the punch on Sky Sports.

That said, Lomax came away from the incident bleeding.

In the same game Sione Mata’utia was yellow carded for a below the knees tackle on Mikolaj Oledzki and he has been fined subsequently.

Leeds Rhinos’ Nene MacDonald has been charged but not punished for other contrary behaviour.

The only other players charged are Hull KR’s Jesse Sue for raising the knee whilst King Vuniyayawa of Salford Red Devils has been fined for a high tackle.

There are no players who have only been cautioned meaning that this weekend’s panel was less busy than some weeks we have had recently.

It remains to be seen whether or not Leeds will appeal McDonnell’s ban with a number of injury concerns rising from the defeat to St Helens including Harry Newman, fellow backrower Morgan Gannon and halfback Aidan Sezer.

Mikolaj Oledzki didn’t look great either after Mata’utia’s tackle.

Following the latest round of Betfred Super League fixtures, the Match Review Panel have issued the following sanctions:

James McDonnell (Leeds Rhinos) – Grade D Punching – 2 Match Penalty Notice & £250 Fine
Sione Mata’utia (St Helens) – Grade A Dangerous Contact – £250 Fine
Nene McDonald (Leeds Rhinos) – Grade A Other Contrary Behaviour – Not Applicable
Sauaso Sue (Hull KR) – Grade A Raising Knee in Tackle – £250 Fine
King Vuniyayawa (Salford Red Devils) – Grade B High Tackle – £250 Fine