Six Nations: Stephen Ferris cleared to play for Irish in Paris

Stephen Ferris
Ferris reacts after being sin-binned in the closing minutes of Sunday's game against Wales

Stephen Ferris will be available for Ireland's Six Nations clash against France after escaping a ban in a disciplinary hearing on Wednesday.

The flanker had been cited for his tackle on Wales forward Ian Evans in the closing minutes of Sunday's defeat.

Ferris was yellow-carded for the tackle which led to Leigh Halfpenny's match-winning penalty at the Aviva Stadium.

However, Ferris was not handed any further penalty at a hearing in London so he can play on Saturday in Paris.

"The committee, after careful analysis of the video evidence and consideration of the player's and his representative's explanation of the tackle, did not uphold the citing," said a Six Nations statement.

Ferris reacted to the decision on Twitter, saying: "Thank goodness that is all over. Happy man."

Earlier on Wednesday, Wales lock Bradley Davies received a seven-week ban for his tackle on Ireland's Donnacha Ryan in the same match which will rule the Welshman out of the remainder of the Six Nations.

Both Ferris and Davies were reported by match citing commissioner, Italian Achille Reali.

The Ferris case hearing was chaired by Antony Davies of the RFU, who ruled along with Scotland's Douglas Hunter and English official John Doubleday.

Ulster and Ireland team-mate Rory Best came to Ferris's defence after Sunday's game when he said that the player's sin-binning had been harsh.

"Anyone that knows Stephen knows that he tackles very, very hard but very, very fair," said Best.

"This was just a prime example of how he hits. There was nothing illegal about it."