Tomas Francis has been cited in the aftermath of Wales' 25-21 Six Nations defeat to England on 12 March. The Exeter Chiefs tight-head, who was introduced as a second-half replacement for Samson Lee, became involved in a controversial incident during the 72nd minute, when his fingers appeared to make contact with the eyes of Dan Cole.
Cole was sent to the sin bin for his role in collapsing a maul, but that penalty was later reversed. Francis was not punished with a card by referee Craig Joubert, though, after the Television Match Official (TMO) ruled that a lack of multiple angles meant it was inconclusive as to whether or not the action was deliberate. Saracens wing Chris Ashton was ruled out of contention for entire tournament after being handed a 10-week suspension for a similar offence involving Ulster's Luke Marshall during a European Champions Cup clash in January.
"Tomas Francis, the Wales replacement prop forward, has been cited by the independent citing commissioner for allegedly making contact with the eyes or eye area of an opponent (Dan Cole) in the second half of the RBS 6 Nations match between England and Wales at Twickenham on Saturday 12 March 2016," an official Six Nations disciplinary update confirmed. "Law 10.4 (m) applies – acts contrary to good sportsmanship."
When asked about the incident in his post-match press conference, Wales head coach Warren Gatland said: "I haven't seen it again. I listened to the TMO's commentary and he said there was only one view of it and it was inconclusive.
"That's what he said to the referee, he thought there was contact with the face and it should be a penalty. To be honest, my initial reaction was I didn't think it looked great. I haven't had a look at it since then."
England back-row James Haskell was handed a formal warning by the citing commissioner for a dangerous neck roll tackle. There was no initial mention of any potential sanction for Joe Marler, who has been reminded of his responsibilities as an international player by Eddie Jones after allegedly aiming a slur at Lee based on his traveller heritage. However, the former Harlequins captain has now also been cited for a forearm that struck the face of Rob Evans as the two forwards went to ground.