Hull FC's Brad Fash avoids biting ban as tribunal explains decision

Hull FC forward Brad Fash has escaped a ban after an operational rules tribunal dismissed Elliot Minchella's biting allegation due to insufficient evidence.

Elliot Minchella makes the complaint to referee James Child. (Picture: SWPix.com)
Elliot Minchella makes the complaint to referee James Child. (Picture: SWPix.com)

The 26-year-old was charged with grade E biting by the Rugby Football League's match review panel following a complaint by Hull KR vice-captain Minchella during last Friday's derby.

Fash was facing a ban of up to eight matches but he is now free to face Catalans Dragons on Sunday in a major boost for the Black and Whites.

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The verdict read: “Each of the two players here – Elliot Minchella and Brad Fash - gave fair and credible evidence. Neither one of them could be said to be untruthful.

Brad Fash receives the man of the match award after the Warrington game. (Picture: SWPix.com)

"Elliot Minchella felt that he had been bitten and that was a genuine reaction to the coming together of his hand and Brad Fash’s face.

"Brad Fash’s evidence that he did not, nor would he, bite Elliot Minchella or any other player was also very credible.

"Further, it is very difficult to see what motivation Brad Fash would have had to bite in the unremarkable circumstances of this particular tackle.

"In these circumstances, the tribunal is not satisfied to the relatively high standard of proof that is required to secure a conviction for this sort of serious allegation.

"There is no evidence of a bite injury and the film footage does not show an actual bite, although it suggests a coming together of Elliot Minchella’s hand and Brad Fash’s mouth."

Fash has been an ever-present for Hull this season and continued his impressive form with a try in a man of the match performance in Monday's win over Warrington Wolves.

The tribunal also heard Sam Powell's case after he was charged with a grade E crusher tackle against St Helens.

The Wigan Warriors hooker was found guilty and has been suspended for six games, in addition to a £500 fine.