All change at Sarries

It looks set to be all change at Saracens next season after the Vicarage Road outfit decided to release a large percentage of their playing squad. [more]

All change at Sarries

It looks set to be all change at Saracens next season after the Vicarage Road outfit decided to release a large percentage of their playing squad.

A total of up to 18 players are thought to have been told they have no future at the club beyond the current campaign.

Saracens’ director of rugby Eddie Jones will be also be leaving at the end of the 2008/09 season and his replacement Brendan Venter is expected to a recruit number of fellow South African players.

"Brendan Venter, the incoming director of rugby, met with each of the players, one after the other, on Monday,” said a Saracens club statement.

"He wanted to explain his plans for next season, openly and honestly, and to end any uncertainty.”

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The likes of All Black lock Chris Jack and Samoa prop Census Johnston are expected to be among the high-profile casualties as Sarries look to fight the recent change in economic climate.

"Some will question why these decisions have been made in February, and not at the end of the season,” the statement continued.

"Other clubs may choose to adjust their squads in April or May. Our logic is that, by being open and honest in February, we afford the affected players a realistic chance of finding a new club.

"Selfishly, the club could have waited until the end of the season, but most clubs will have finalised their ‘09/10 squads by then and, in all probability, the affected players would be left high and dry.

"The club is already working with the various players’ agents and the PRA to assist in securing their futures, and, without exception, the club will act decently and honestly.

"This has been a difficult week, but the reality is that Saracens is not immune to the economic realities being faced by many companies across the country.”

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