EPCR, the organiser of the European Rugby Champions Cup, Challenge Cup and Continental Shield, is pleased to announce that Mike Hamlin has been appointed as chairman of the independent Disciplinary Panel.

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An English retired lawyer and deputy district judge, Hamlin has had a distinguished rugby career as a player, coach, referee, referee mentor and assessor, timekeeper and referee society administrator.

As well as undertaking roles with Rugby Europe as a Match Commissioner, he has chaired disciplinary and appeal panels for EPCR, the Rugby Football Union (RFU), Six Nations and World Rugby.

He succeeds Professor Lorne Crerar who performed the role as chairman of the independent Disciplinary Panel with distinction for over a decade.

Hamlin’s main responsibilities will include overseeing the operation of EPCR’s independent Disciplinary Panel, appointing chairmen and panel members in specific cases to deal with on-field and off-field disciplinary matters arising from EPCR competitions, managing the performance of the Panel and arranging appropriate training and mentoring.

He will also chair EPCR’s annual disciplinary conference and liaise with World Rugby’s Judicial Panel chairman in respect of the appointment of disciplinary personnel.

“Mike’s recruitment is great news for EPCR as he is very experienced and well respected across the sport,” said Vincent Gaillard, EPCR CEO. “As we welcome Mike on board, we would also like to place on record our appreciation for the service of Professor Lorne Crerar whose legacy to the tournaments, and rugby in general, is ensuring that the game is much cleaner to play and more attractive to watch than ever before.

“We are delighted that Professor Crerar has agreed to continue in his role as an appeal chairman, and to provide support to Mike while he gets to grips with the demands of the position.”

Mike Hamlin said: “I am delighted to have been appointed by EPCR as the new chairman of the Disciplinary Panel. I am looking forward to developing further the excellent work done by Professor Lorne Crerar for the benefit of everyone involved in the European game.”