All Blacks prop Owen Franks receives 2-match Super Rugby ban

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) All Blacks prop Owen Franks has been suspended for two matches for striking but will be available for New Zealand’s first test against France on June 9.

Franks was cited after the Super Rugby match between the Crusaders and Blues on Saturday for striking Blues captain James Parsons. The incident was not seen at the time by referee Glen Jackson but was brought to his attention two minutes later by the television match official.

Jackson determined he could not deal with the offense at that stage because a set piece had taken place since the incident occurred.

Franks is the second Crusaders and All Blacks prop within a week to receive a two-match ban for striking. Teammate Joe Moody was cited a week earlier for a similar offense against Waratahs center Kurtley Beale.