England prop Sinckler to miss Six Nations opener due to ban

London (AFP) –


Prop Kyle Sinckler will miss England's opening Six Nations clash with Scotland on February 6 after being suspended by the English Premiership for two weeks for failing to respect the authority of a referee.

The 27-year-old Bristol Bears front-rower apologised after last weekend's win over champions Exeter Chiefs when he used an expletive to question a decision by referee Karl Dickson.

The independent disciplinary panel refuted his claim his behaviour did not warrant a red card.

"While Kyle Sinckler accepted that he used foul language at the referee, he did not accept the conduct warranted a red card," the panel said.

The disciplinary board saw the live recordings of the incident and said his behaviour was "aggressive and directed at the referee."

Sinckler, capped 40 times, is free to play again on February 9, making him available for the second Six Nations match against Italy at Twickenham.

He apologised for the outburst straight after the game, admitting it was "not the example I want to be setting".

It was also decided at the hearing Dickson had already explained to Sinckler he believed Cowan-Dickie had attempted to wrap his arms in the tackle, at which point the Bristol tighthead swore at the referee.

The English Premiership resmues on January 29 which will see Sinckler miss Bristol's match with Bath.

"The player was candid in his evidence as to why he had done so and regretted his actions," the panel said.

"The panel found that as his actions disrespected the authority of the referee it was in breach of a core value of rugby -- respect of match officials -- and warranted a red card.

"The panel determined that in all the circumstances it was a low entry point with no relevant mitigation. The sanction is a two-week ban."