Clermont Auvergne’s final game of the Top 14 season saw them come up against Toulouse, a game they won 36-26. However, the win came at a price as South African lock Flip van der Merwe was handed a four-week ban for making contact with the referee.
Van der Merwe took to Twitter to hit out at the ban, claiming to hate what rugby has become.
— flip van der merwe (@flipvandermerwe) May 24, 2018
At the time the referee took no action and even awarded the penalty to Clermont, although he did consult with Van der Merwe and asked him not to do it again. Afterward, a Disciplinary Committee of the National Rugby League deemed it "imprudent physical contact with a match official" and handed the 32-year-old a ban. It means he will miss the first two weeks of games next season.