Cockerill given month ban for abusing referee

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The Independent Online

Leicester, the English champions, will have to play their next four games, two of them major Heineken Cup contests with French club Clermont Auvergne, without match-day input from head coach Richard Cockerill.

The former hooker has been given a month's ban from all "live" activity – including coaching juniors right down to the under-sevens – after admitting verbally abusing the referee Tim Wigglesworth and his assistants during a game with Newport Gwent Dragons a fortnight ago.

Cockerill, who caused a furore as a player when he trespassed on the All Blacks' haka before a Test match, was also fined £2,000 by a Rugby Football Union disciplinary panel. Earlier this week, he said: "You can't do those sorts of things. I have apologised to those concerned and it won't happen again."

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