The Argentina Rugby Union said it “fully supports the statement by Mariano Galarza, backed by the UAR, in the sense that no illegal play was seen by that player”.
Galarza battled back from a shoulder injury to be fit for the World Cup and played in Argentina’s loss to the All Blacks – and was found to have made contact “with the eye or eye area” of New Zealand’s Brodie Retallick.
The 28-year-old was found guilty of making contact “with the eye or eye area” of Retallick at Wembley and he now has until Friday to decide whether to appeal the decision. Having conducted a detailed review of all the available evidence, the judicial officer upheld the citing.
Galarza’s ban extends past the World Cup and will stop him playing for his English club side Gloucester until November 26.
An additional week was added as a deterrent against such acts, though Galarza’s suspension was reduced to nine weeks after taking into account mitigating factors, including his excellent disciplinary record.
Galarza’s suspension took effect immediately, leaving the Pumas with only three recognised locks, one of whom, Guido Petti, misses the Georgia match after a head knock sustained in scoring Argentina’s try on Sunday (Monday NZ time).
Javier Ortega Desio is brought in for the suspended Galarza on the replacements bench.
Coach Daniel Hourcade was going to name his team to face Georgia at midday but postponed the announcement until the evening at the team’s Cheltenham hotel, near Gloucester.