Rugby / Violence Costs Aussie, All Black

Rob Simmons banned from European tour for eight weeks over dangerous tackle during 33-6 loss to France in Paris; New Zealand flanker Adam Thomson suspended for Saturday's test against Italy.

Australia will be without Rob Simmons for the rest of its European tour after the lock was banned for eight weeks for a dangerous tackle during the 33-6 loss to France in Paris, while New Zealand flanker Adam Thomson will be suspended for Saturday's test against Italy in Rome after being banned for one week for "stamping or trampling" on the head of an opponent.

Simmons was suspended by the Six Nations, which oversees disciplinary issues during autumn tests, after being cited for a tip tackle on France flanker Yannick Nyanga in the second half of last Saturday's match.

He will miss next Saturday's test against England at Twickenham, as well as the internationals against Italy and Wales on the final two weekends of the tour.

A statement released yesterday by the Six Nations says a ban of 14 weeks was reduced to eight because of mitigation, including Simmons' exemplary previous disciplinary record.

Thomson of New Zealand was yellow-carded for the offense on Scotland flanker Alasdair Strokosch during Saturday's 51-22 win at Murrayfield, but was also cited. He will be free to play in the All Blacks' tour-ending matches against Wales and England.