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John Ryan banned for Munster's Champions Cup clash with Northampton Saints

Munster prop John Ryan has been suspended for the province's Investec Champions Cup clash against Northampton on Sunday and their next two games.

The 35-year-old was cited for a clearout on Liam Belcher during Munster’s BKT URC win over Cardiff on Friday night.

Under Law 9.18: "A player must not lift an opponent off the ground and drop or drive that player so that their head and/or upper body make contact with the ground."

The Ireland international was given a yellow card at the time but a committee found that it merited a red card and imposed the ban.

The panel initially found the offence merited a six-week ban but it was subsequently reduced.

"The player accepted that he had committed an act of foul play but that it had not warranted a red card," a statement read.

"However, the panel reduced the suspension to three games (50% mitigation) due to his good record, apology and exemplary conduct in the hearing which results in a three-game suspension."

Munster are also without injured props Oli Jager and Roman Salanoa for the trip to Franklin's Garden (kick-off 12.30pm).

Should Munster beat the Saints, Ryan will miss their quarter-final and their URC game against the Bulls, while if they lose on Sunday, then the Cork man will finish his ban after their visit to the Emirates Lions on 27 April.

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Watch Leinster v Leicester Tigers in the Investec Champions Cup on Saturday from 7.30pm on RTÉ2 and RTÉ

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