Ronan O’Gara hits back over his latest Top 14 disciplinary summons

Ronan O’Gara has taken offense at his most recent French disciplinary hearing summons. The La Rochelle boss has an appearance scheduled for next Wednesday before a committee, which is four days before his team plays their Irish rivals Leinster in the Investec Champions Cup first round.

It will be the latest in a long line of appearances the Irishman has made due to incidents in the Top 14. However, while he has previously held his hand up in the past over his behaviour, he is flabbergasted that he has a case to

response to the question he asked the referees at halftime of last Sunday’s loss at Racing.

“There were a few words exchanged with the fourth and fifth referees at half-time regarding the non-awarding of a penalty try to La Rochelle by referee Adrien Descottes,” O’Gara wrote in his weekly Irish Examiner column.

“I’ve received a subpoena for allegedly inappropriate behavior.The coaches in the Top 14 wouldn’t have time for anything else during the week if they were constantly being accused of acting inappropriately whenever they questioned or offered feedback on an incorrect choice.

O’Gara alleged that he gets treated differently by the Top 14 administrators because he is Irish. “Christophe Urios (of Clermont) has publicly criticised the referees, but he is not an Irish coach who is making his way in France,” he suggested.

“You must admit guilt when it exists, as I have in the past. At times, I have voiced my dissatisfaction and questioned decisions made.

Without sounding too paranoid, there is undoubtedly a feeling that selective treatment is a problem in this situation. Others seem to be able to criticize officialdom without consequence, yet if I give someone a sidelong glance, I find myself back in front of a hearing committee.

Amidst the uproar surrounding his most recent disciplinary action, O’Gara bravely tackled the subject of his team’s patchy performance following the absence of key players for the Rugby World Cup. They are now in 11th place ahead of their matchup with Perpignan on Saturday, having only won three of their eight Top 14 games.

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