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In what is being dubbed the biggest story in English club rugby history, Premiership and European champions Saracens are facing a 35 point deduction and £5 million (NZD$10m) fine for breaching salary cap regulations over the last three seasons.
This is not the news eight of England’s World Cup squad, still reeling from their 20-point defeat to the Springboks in the final, wanted to confront after returning home.
The maximum penalty of 35 points deducted and the £5,360,272.31 fine – the largest ever handed out in English club rugby – comes following a seven-month investigation from Premiership Rugby (PRL) into Saracens’ practices over the past nine months after it was revealed their most high profile players entered into investment or property partnerships with the club chairman, Nigel Wray.
Saracens have won five English domestic titles in the past nine years, three European crowns from the last four.
Last season they pulled off the double.
Two of those domestic titles came in the timeframe Premiership Rugby have been investigating, with Saracens winning 53 of 72 matches
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