Williams Cops 7 Match Ban

Manly’s Tony Williams set for extended stint on sidelines.

Robert Whiteby Robert White

The Manly Sea Eagles’ Tony Williams has been hit with a seven match ban for his vicious tackle on Cronulla’s Isaac De Gois (see it here).

The forward was charged with a dangerous throw during his team’s three point loss to Cronulla on Monday.

In the game’s ninth minute, Williams threw De Gois into the ground head-first resulting in the NRL review committee later deeming the challenge to be a grade four dangerous tackle.

Both coaches said after the game they didn’t believe there was a whole lot to the tackle, but the NRL had other ideas. Williams accepted a guilty plea and did not choose to contest the result in order to avoid a 10 match ban if still found guilty upon review.

Had Williams contested the charge he would have only missed five matches but Manly chose the safer route after seeking legal advice.

The powerhouse will now be ineligible for Australia’s Test side to play against New Zealand next month and it is believed the suspension will greatly hinder his chances of playing with the New South Wales State of Origin side.

Williams will be available to play in Origin I but will be relying on coach Ricky Stuart selecting him without match fitness or form.

It was the third suspension faced by Williams in the past seven matches.

Sea Eagles coach Geoff Toovey reported that Williams was “shattered” by the ruling and was receiving a strong backing from his teammates.