Rugby Union round-up: Dan Cole cleared of bite accusation, Eastmond doubtful for Leicester match, WRU call on English clubs to resolve Heineken Cup issue

A brief round-up of the latest rugby news

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The Independent Online

The England tight-head prop Dan Cole will not face any disciplinary charge arising from Leicester’s victory over Worcester at Welford Road on Sunday.

Television footage and still photographs appeared to show the hand of the visiting outside-half Ignacio Mieres in Cole’s mouth, and the Argentine ended up with a bloodied finger. But the Rugby Football Union’s citing office, Peter Larter, decided after repeated viewings that the incident, and the damage accruing from it, was accidental.

Kyle Eastmond, promoted to the senior England squad ahead of the autumn Test series at Twickenham, is struggling to recover from a knee problem in time for Bath’s high-profile meeting with Leicester at the Recreation Ground this weekend. Eastmond suffered the injury during the West Country club’s impressive opening-day victory at Newcastle. “There is no structural damage, but it’s too early to tell whether he’ll be fit for Saturday,” said the head coach Mike Ford.

Roger Lewis, the chief executive of the Welsh Rugby Union, called on England’s top-flight clubs to “step up, come to the table and negotiate properly” in an effort to save the Heineken Cup from implosion. English and French clubs have resolved to leave the competition at the end of the season if there is no agreement over qualification, broadcasting and financial disputes, and as things stand, there is no sign of a solution. “There has to be a European Cup – it’s too good to lose,” Lewis said. “This problem has been created by the England clubs and they must sort it.”