Saracens now 89 points adrift after additional 70-point penalty

Saracens were last night given an additional 70-point deduction that ensures they will be relegated from the Gallagher Premiership in bottom place. The punishment came hours after Ed Griffiths departed as the club’s interim chief executive.

Saracens have been docked a further 70 points. Picture: Paul Harding/PA Wire
Saracens have been docked a further 70 points. Picture: Paul Harding/PA Wire

In the latest twist to the salary cap scandal to have engulfed the double winners, Premiership Rugby announced that their total points deduction will now stand at 105 after they were initially docked 35 in November.

PRL had already decided Saracens will be relegated in June following repeated breeches of the £7 million ceiling for player wages enforced by the league. The additional sanction guarantees they will finish 2019-20 in 12th place.

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The clarification over the mechanism for their demotion to the second tier of English rugby means their new points total is -77, leaving them 89 adrift of Leicester in 11th place.

In addition, PRL has amended two of its salary cap regulations in mid-season following unanimous approval of its 13 constituent clubs.

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Now any club can be subjected to a mid-season audit should they be in breach of or are suspected of being in breach of salary cap regulations. Failure to comply could result in a 70-point deduction.

The announcement came on the day the scandal claimed another victim as Griffiths stepped down with immediate effect. He departs just 26 days into the 12-month contract that brought him back to Allianz Park for a second spell designed to steer the club through the crisis.

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Griffiths joins former chairman Nigel Wray and former chief executive Mittesh Velani in leaving positions made untenable by the scandal.

“This was always going to be a very short-term appointment and others are well-placed to drive forward the rebuilding of the club,” Griffiths said in a statement.

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Last week, Griffiths denied working as a cricket agent, following claims he had been reported to the England and Wales Cricket Board.