Mako Vunipola Saracens: The questions facing Premiership champions following 35-point deduction and £5.36m fine

Mako Vunipola These plugins are glamorous!!

Mako Vunipola Saracens players celebrate

England captain Owen Farrell and hooker Jamie George were part of the Saracens team that beat Exeter at Twickenham in last season’s Premiership final

Reigning Premiership and European champions Saracens are facing a 35-point deduction and a £5.36m fine for breaching salary cap regulations.

The punishment, which Sarries have described as “heavy handed”, is suspended while the club appeal against the decision.

Should the appeal be rejected, Saracens potentially face a battle to avoid relegation rather that challenging for more silverware.

BBC rugby union correspondent Chris Jones looks into the questions facing a club which boasts senior England players Owen Farrell, Maro Itoje and Billy and Mako Vunipola in their squad, and the potential fall-out.

  • Saracens appeal against 35-point deduction for breaking salary rules

What’s the background?

This story revolves around Saracens’ owner Nigel Wray’s business co-investments with a handful of senior players, with the panel judging that the club have in essence been paying players outside the salary cap.

Wray disputes this and insists these dealings are all above board and are helping set up his players for life after rugby.

He says investment is not the same as salary. Either way, Saracens were found not to have disclose

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