Sonny Bill Williams out of deciding Lions test after being banned for four weeks for horror tackle on Anthony Watson

SONNY BILL WILLIAMS is out of the crunch Lions series decider after being banned for four weeks for smashing Anthony Watson in the face.

The All Blacks centre was slapped with a month on the sidelines after his horror hit in the Second Test.

Sonny Bill Williams addressed the media after receiving a four week ban
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Sonny Bill Williams shoulder charged into the face of Anthony Watson
Sonny Bill Williams has been banned for four weeks for charging into Anthony Watson
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Williams Wellington wobble cost Steve Hansen’s side the win at the Cake Tin as the Lions fought back to take the epic tour to a decider in Auckland.

Speaking after learning of his ban, Williams said: “Just finished my hearing, ended up getting four weeks. Obviously really disappointed, but happy with being able to get in there and say my piece.

“They’ve come to the conclusion that it was reckless, it wasn’t intentional.

“I’ve got in contact with Anthony [Watson] and I’ve apologised to him, but very disappointed that I was sent from the field last night and let my brothers down.”

New Zealand have already called in Malakai Fekitoa to fill the void left by Williams’ absence ahead of the last test at Eden Park on Saturday.

He was just the third All Black of all-time to see red and the first in his home country.

Sonny Bill Williams revealed how he has apologised to Anthony Watson
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Sonny Bill Williams became just the third New Zealander to receive a red card
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Lions took full advantage of his sending off by ending the All Blacks’ 46-match unbeaten home run
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New Zealand have called up Malakai Fekitoa to fill the void left by Sonny Bill Williams’ absence
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Kiwi rugby player gives a boy his gold medal

It was also the first time since 2009 that the world champions tasted defeat ending a remarkable 46-match unbeaten run.

A statement released by New Zealand's Rugby Media department said: "All Blacks midfielder Sonny Bill Williams has been suspended for four weeks after admitting an act of Foul Play contrary to law 10.4(g).

"Williams was given a red card by referee Jerome Garces (France) in the 24th minute of the first half of the second Test match played between the All Blacks and the British & Irish Lions on Saturday.

"With respect to the sanction, the offending was deemed to be reckless and warranted a mid-range entry level, which provides for a six week suspension. However, taking into account mitigating factors including his early admission, his disciplinary record, good character and remorse the six week suspension was reduced to a period of four weeks.

"The Player has 48 hours in which to appeal from the time he was informed of the decision."

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