Sale Sharks have been handed a five-point deduction in the Premiership Rugby Cup for fielding an ineligible player during the game against Wasps played on 19th March.
The decision follows after the club fielded Alex Groves in their matchday squad despite the lock featuring for Bristol Bears in the competition in November last year.
According to the Premiership Rugby regulations 6.3 - A club may not be represented in the competition by any person who has played or been a replacement or substitute (i.e. included in the match squad) for another club in the competition in the current season.
As a result, Groves were handed a five point deduction.
“Sale Sharks RFC came before an RFU Disciplinary Panel charged with a regulatory breach, which resulted from their inclusion of an ineligible player in the match squad for the Premiership Rugby Cup match against Wasps," said Panel Chair Philip Evans QC.
“The club indicated in advance of the hearing that it accepted the charge. The matter was then decided by the disciplinary panel on the basis of written submissions it had received, the club choosing not to exercise its right to an oral hearing.
"The RFU submitted the appropriate sanction for this breach would be a 5-point deduction because that would be in line with the minimum sanction that would be applied in other RFU competitions in the event that ineligible players are named in match squads.
"Sale sharks did not advance any alternative submissions and the panel agreed with the RFU’s reasoning. The sanction imposed will be a 5-point deduction from Sales Sharks in this competition.”