It upheld French coach Jaques Brunel insistence that the decisions had not been made by anyone who was formally connected with the French team, but by the match doctor with the assistance of the video doctor.
Brunel said: “They were collisions, but the head injury protocol was decided by the independent doctor. It wasn’t our decision. Both players had knee injuries, but the independent doctor decided that by the protocol.”
Someone must have said to the doc that he’d sustained a knock to the head. Either him or a member of the coaching staff, I’d have thought. The moment someone says that to a doc, the doc will be duty bound to undertake a HIA. So he says “I must do a HIA” which allows the French to say it was nothing to do with them, it was the doc’s decision to do an HIA.
Re HIA, I'll give it 2-3 years and it will be any player on the pitch can be replaced by any player off the pitch regardless of reason, because every player will have been coached to say "Ow my head" regardless of the injury.