Wales prop Francis banned for eight weeks for gouging

Referee Craig Joubert gestures as he officiates during the Six Nations international rugby match between England and Wales at Twickenham stadium in London, Saturday, March,12, 2016. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

LONDON (AP) The Six Nations disciplinary committee has suspended Wales replacement prop forward Tomas Francis for eight weeks for gouging in the game against England.

Francis was cited following the match on Saturday at Twickenham for ''allegedly making contact with the eye or eye area of an opponent.''

He appeared Tuesday before the disciplinary committee, which found that ''he had recklessly made contact.''

The maximum ban is 12 weeks but the committee considered mitigating factors.

Francis will be free to play again on May 9.