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Cardiff's George Earle to serve eight-week suspension for eye gouging

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Cardiff lock George Earle has failed with his appeal against an eight-week suspension for eye gouging.

Earle was sent off in Cardiff's 38-3 European Challenge Cup loss to Bath on Dec. 15 for making contact with the eye area of flanker Tom Ellis.

The 30-year-old was later hit with the two-month ban despite pleading not guilty, and has now had his appeal thrown out too.

"An independent appeal committee has decided not to allow an appeal by the Cardiff Blues player, George Earle, against the eight-week suspension imposed on him by an independent disciplinary committee," read a statement from European Professional Club Rugby [EPCR].

"The appeal committee, which consisted of Professor Lorne Crerar [Scotland], chairman, Rod McKenzie [Scotland] and Roger Morris [Wales], reviewed the sanction without a personal hearing following a request from the player.

"Earle's suspension therefore remains in place and he is free to play on Monday, 13 Feb. 2017."