Crusaders captain Whitelock banned for 2 games

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — All Blacks lock and Crusaders captain Sam Whitelock has been suspended for two matches after being found guilty of striking during a Super Rugby match against the Cheetahs on Saturday.

Whitelock was shown a yellow card in the 71st minute of the match at Bloemfontein for elbowing Cheetahs prop Charles Marais. The Crusaders won 48-21.

A SANZAAR judicial committee on Monday ruled that Whitelock's offense merited a red card and could have carried a four-match suspension. The penalty was reduced to two matches after his previous disciplinary record was taken into account.

Whitelock will miss Crusaders matches against the Bulls and Hurricanes.

Meanwhile, Sunwolves fullback Jamie-Jerry Taulagi has been banned for five weeks for a dangerous tackle on Chiefs winger Shaun Stevenson.

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