Shamed Hartley faces end of Lions dream after sinning Saint is sent off for referee abuse in final loss

By Sam Peters

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Dylan Hartley's British Lions hopes are hanging by a thread after the controversial hooker was shown a straight red card in Saturday's Aviva Premiership final for allegedly verbally abusing referee Wayne Barnes.

The Northampton Saints captain was sent off when he appeared to call Barnes a '****ing cheat' following a collapsed scrum which prompted the referee to award a penalty to eventual winners Leicester Tigers.

Off: Hartley was sent off just before half time for what seemed to be dissent

Off: Hartley was sent off just before half time for what seemed to be dissent

Off: Hartley was sent off just before half time for what seemed to be dissent

HARTLEY'S TROUBLED PAST

The red card at Twickenham was the latest disciplinary blemish on his career.

April 2007 - Banned for 26 weeks after being found guilty of eye-gouging Wasps forwards James Haskell and Jonny O'Connor.

March 2012 - Banned for eight weeks after being found guilty of biting Ireland forward Stephen Ferris in a Six Nations match.

December 2012 - Banned for two weeks for punching Ulster hooker Rory Best in a Heineken Cup match.

May 2013 - Sent off in the Aviva Premiership final.

Hartley, who served a 26-week ban for eye-gouging in 2007 and a two-week suspension this season for punching Ulster's  Rory Best, had already been warned about his language.

The 27-year-old is expected to face an RFU disciplinary panel on Tuesday when he could  receive a six-week ban.

The Lions leave for Hong Kong tomorrow and last night a spokesman said anything more than a two-week ban will see Hartley miss the tour to Australia.

With their captain on the sidelines, Saints went on to lose their first ever Premiership final 37-17 to Leicester after going in at half-time 16-5 behind.

Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder said the comments had been directed at England rival Tom Youngs. 'I support Dyan,' he said. 'If he says he was talking to a player, then I have to accept it.'


Double blow: Hartley watched from the bench as Northampton lost, and now Warren Gatland has a problem

Double blow: Hartley watched from the bench as Northampton lost, and now Warren Gatland has a problem

Double blow: Hartley watched from the bench as Northampton lost, and now Warren Gatland has a problem

History: This isn't the first time Hartley has been involved in troubleinvolved

History: This isn't the first time Hartley has been involved in trouble

 


The comments below have not been moderated.

Great to see you've put on all the good that went on yesterday, like the tigers winning! Not one article about the game yesterday nor today or anything about the England game today as well! You'd rather put Wane Rooney's ugly mush on here! Start reporting the Rugby DM instead of all this football rubbish!!!!

Click to rate     Rating   7

It's about time the Football leagues followed suit and started penalising players and teams for foul language!

Click to rate     Rating   19

@ sean from Salisbury... no, they don't. That's why he got a straight red within two seconds of saying it. Well done Wayne Barnes. - Dutch Ovens , Still stuck here..., 26/5/2013 10:04 At any rate I think you get the point. With scenes such as this, the antics of Delon Armitage last week and the behavior of the England squad at the last world cup (to mention but a few incidents) I think we can well and truly put to bed the myth that rugby players are better behaved than their football counterparts. Can't we?

Click to rate     Rating   15

@ sean from Salisbury... no, they don't. That's why he got a straight red within two seconds of saying it. Well done Wayne Barnes. - Dutch Ovens , Still stuck here..., 26/5/2013 10:04 I'm confused, Did he say it or not then?

Click to rate     Rating   5

Watched the game and Hartley was warned not five minutes beforehand. Well done the referee for being strong. Hartley is an eejit ........... Would never be able to happen in football, referees are too weak and players are too above themselves.

Click to rate     Rating   23

@ sean from Salisbury... no, they don't. That's why he got a straight red within two seconds of saying it. Well done Wayne Barnes.

Click to rate     Rating   13

Rory Best should have been on the tour in the first place. Hope Gatland has the guts to correct his mistake.

Click to rate     Rating   13

Hartley is a very poor player compared to Rory Best. Time for the thugs to be got rid of in Rugby. I hope that Best gets his call for duty with the Lions.

Click to rate     Rating   21

This cannot be! rugby players never speak this way to the referee surely!

Click to rate     Rating   8

Now if only we had this level of respect towards match officials in football

Click to rate     Rating   40
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