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Brian O'Driscoll on OTB Sports Radio

Premiership Rugby has confirmed that Saracens will be relegated to the Championship at the end of the season.

The current Premiership and European Champions were handed a 35 points deduction and fined £5 million for salary cap irregularities in November of last year.

They have now accepted they would not come in within the £7m cap at the end of the season.

Under the salary cap regulations, breaches committed after the start of a season are punished the following campaign but Saracens, after talks with Premiership Rugby, decided to be relegated this season rather than wait a year.

Premiership Rugby's  chief executive, Darren Childs has released a statement today saying that they're

"prepared to take strong action to enforce the regulations governing fair competition between our clubs.

“At the conclusion of dialogue with Saracens about their compliance with the salary cap regulations, it has been decided that Saracens will be relegated at the end of this season.

“At the same as enforcing the existing regulations, we want to ensure a level playing field for all clubs in the future, which is why we have asked Lord Myners to carry out an independently-led review of the cap.

"As part of this process, we will soon be announcing an open consultation so that everyone involved in the game has the opportunity to contribute to its future.

“The actions that we have taken – dealing with breaches of the current regulations and reviewing the system for the future – will help us to build a stronger league and uphold the confidence of supporters.”

Saracens will now compete in Gallagher Premiership Rugby through to the end of the 2019-20 season and even though there is no salary cap in the Championship, they will have to present their books for examination before being allowed back in the Premiership.

Chairman of the club Neil Golding has given his reaction to the development this evening;

"I acknowledge the club has made errors in the past and we unreservedly apologise for those mistakes.

"I and the rest of the Board are committed to overseeing stringent new governance measures to ensure regulatory compliance going forward.’’

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Premiership Rugby Relegated Saracens

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