FLY-HALF Duncan Weir insists he “did not see any dirtiness” in prop Ethan Waller’s contentious red-card tackle in Worcester Warriors’ 25-16 loss at Dragons.

Waller was sent off by referee Ludovic Cayre for a dangerous high tackle on flanker Cory Hill in the final eight minutes at Rodney Parade on Friday night.

But Weir reckoned it was a “legal, clean shot” by Waller as he felt his team-mate’s shoulder made contact with Hill’s shoulder not his head.

Waller is expected to face a disciplinary hearing this week where he could be hit with a suspension, but Weir does not believe any further action should be taken.

“I thought it was just shoulder on shoulder and a massive collision,” said Weir who was close to Waller when he made the tackle.


“I didn’t see any dirtiness in the collision at all.

“He has not tried to take his head off. For me he has not made any shoulder to head contact.

“It was a strange one.

“If anything, it might be a head on head collision that’s made the action of the tackle (look) as harsh as maybe these laws are getting refereed now.

“For me, it was a legal, clean shot.

“He has just read the play, stepped out of the line and made a massive collision.

“He is a big man so when he gets the timing right – which he did – the outcome is massive.”

With Warriors searching for a losing bonus point as they trailed by nine points, Weir said it was a “big loss” when Waller saw red.

And the Scotland international hopes Waller will avoid a ban and be available for Warriors’ Gallagher Premiership derby battle with Gloucester at Kingsholm on Friday (7.45pm).

“We were trying to squeeze our way back into the match,” Weir said.

“Even if we could come away with a bonus point, we had that target in that last 10 minutes or so.

“On a night like that tries are a rare event. It’s about doing the nitty gritty stuff and keeping that scoreboard ticking over with threes.

“It was a big loss at that stage of the game (when Waller was sent off) and we were on the back foot once that happened.

“I don’t see any further action needed but those decisions don’t lie with me unfortunately.

“Fingers crossed (he won’t be banned) because Ethan is a fantastic player and we need him in our squad.”

Weir landed five of his six kicks at goal to help Warriors come back from 13-0 down to go 16-13 in front.

But the experienced stand-off admitted Warriors paid the price for their ill-discipline as his opposite number Sam Davies bagged a 20-point haul.

“It was a scrappy, old affair where there was not a lot of rugby played,” Weir said.

“We couldn’t really build any pressure.

“We had that little spell before half-time and it was great to get a couple of scores on the board to get within touching distance.

“Then we got that try to even it up but it was just the penalty count and Sam kicked really well.

“We knew he had a good boot on him and that we had to be disciplined, but unfortunately too many times we got on the wrong side of the ref.”

On the refereeing decision, Weir added: “It’s just one of those things where you have got to toe the line very carefully.

“But we are not a dirty, malicious team that’s going out to try to apply foul play on the game.

“I feel like we play fair and hard and unfortunately the ref probably didn’t see that.”