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Heineken Cup
Stade appeal Dupuy ban
Scrum.com
December 21, 2009
Stade Francais scrum-half Julien Dupuy, Bath v Stade Francais, Heineken Cup, The Recreation Ground, October 18, 2009
Stade Francais are to appeal Julien Dupuy's gouging ban © Getty Images
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Stade Francais have announced that they will appeal scrum-half Julien Dupuy's six-month ban for gouging Ulster's Stephen Ferris.

The incident took place during the sides' clash at Ravenhill in Round 3 of the Heineken Cup and resulted in the France international receiving the lengthy ban after a disciplinary hearing in Dublin on Friday. The committee revealed it awarded the heavy sentence due to the offence being at the top end of the scale in terms of seriousness.

The suspension rules the former Leicester player out of the rest of the domestic and European campaigns with Stade, as well as the Six Nations. The decision has been met with dismay in France with Stade president Max Guazzini labelling the ban "anti-French" and international coach Marc Lievremont describing it as "enormous". Lievremont has said he will not select Dupuy for the summer tour of South Africa if the ban is not reduced, meaning the player's season is over if the appeal fails to succeed.

Officials have been under pressure to step up their reactions to gouging after high profile incidents involving Alan Quinlan, Schalk Burger and Sergio Parrisse at the end of last season and there is a feeling in France that Dupuy has been made an example of. Stade are also anxiously awaiting a decision on Dupuy's teammate, David Attoub, who was cited for the same offence during the same game. The committee adjourned on Attoub's case, pending further evidence. They will reconvene in January.

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