Gloucester Rugby's Head of Rugby Operations Rob Burgess, who represented Azam at today's appeal, expressed his satisfaction at the fact that the appeal was upheld but natural disappointment that the length of ban remained the same.
"We're pleased that the panel upheld our appeal and acknowledged that the offence was mid range rather than top end."
"We feel this was more in line with the nature of the offence which, as the original panel judged, was caused by Olivier kicking out in an attempt to free his ankle when it was being twisted rather than in a deliberate attempt to cause injury and/ or kick Steve Borthwick in the face."
"So, I'm pleased in that respect as we felt Olivier's reputation would have been unfairly tarnished had that distinction not been made."
"However, we are disappointed that the length of the ban remains at 12 weeks which is a significant absence for an offence where there was no deliberate intent to cause injury."
"Olivier will now miss three months of rugby at a critical time of the season, which is damaging for both him and the club. He is paying a heavy price for having so recently come off his only other relevant ban in nearly 200 games over 9 seasons for Gloucester."
"We just hope that there is consistency applied not only across the English game but also across Europe for similar cases as this is vital out of fairness to players and for maintaining the credibility of rugby in the eyes of supporters."
Henry Purdy, a first half replacement for Charlie Sharples, was amongst the try scorers in the 64-19 victory over Aviron Bayonnais on Saturday evening and told GRTV that it was a professional performance, one the team are happy with.
Gloucester's win in Treviso last week means that they need a bonus point win against Bayonne on Saturday evening to secure a home quarter-final (kick off 8pm), but Tim Taylor wants the team to focus on the performance first and foremost.
Billy Burns and Man of the Match Richard Hibbard spoke to GRTV after the 41-0 win in Treviso, on a day when preparations weren't ideal. They felt the team's attitude was key and also praised the travelling support.
Following the conclusion of the Stade Francais vs Harlequins game today, round six is complete and the quarter-finalists in the European Rugby Challenge Cup are now known with Gloucester set to welcome the Cardiff Blues to Kingsholm.
Knowing a bonus point win would secure a home quarter-final, Gloucester completed their European mission in some style on Saturday evening, sweeping aside a spirited but outgunned Aviron Bayonnais scoring 10 tries on their way to a 64-19 victory.