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Page last updated at 09:57 GMT, Tuesday, 1 September 2009 10:57 UK

Richards to referee Quins opener

Dean Richards
The appointment of Richards the ref is sure to raise a smile

Harlequins' bid to put the "bloodgate" scandal behind them has taken a blow after Dean Richards was named referee for their first game of the new season.

But it is not the disgraced former Quins director of rugby who will take charge of the game against Wasps, but a 40-year-old from Berkshire.

He has been a referee since 1995 and the game, part of the Twickenham double header, is his 22nd top-flight match.

Richards the coach is serving a three-year ban over the fake blood scandal.

Quins wing Tom Williams is also suspended until November for his part in the incident which occurred during last season's Heineken Cup quarter-final against Leinster.

Former club physiotherapist Steph Brennan is banned for two years, while club chairman Charles Jillings resigned in the aftermath of the incident.

The club was fined £259,000 for using a fake blood injury to make a substitution in the match, and they could face further action after a European Rugby Cup independent disciplinary committee publishes more judgements from the appeal hearing later this week.

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see also
Cheating not widespread - Worsley
31 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Quins could face further sanction
27 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Richards ban to extend worldwide
18 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
I ordered blood scam - Richards
19 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Richards banned for three years
17 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Richards resigns Harlequins post
08 Aug 09 |  Harlequins
Quins stunned by fake injury fine
20 Jul 09 |  Harlequins
Quins substitution under scrutiny
17 Apr 09 |  Harlequins
Harlequins 5-6 Leinster
12 Apr 09 |  Rugby Union

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