Saints and Saracens are punished for ticket sins

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Northampton and Saracens yesterday had their international ticket allocations cut as Twickenham continued its campaign against the black market.

Saints had their allowance cut by 25 per cent, Saracens by a more modest 10 per cent for the next year, after investigations by the Rugby Football Union revealed tickets originally assigned to those clubs had found their way into the hands of unlicensed corporate hospitality operators. Saracens have accepted the punishment, but Northampton are unhappy and have lodged an appeal.

A statement on the Saints website said: "A full internal investigation has been conducted and the club is satisfied that no one had any intention of seeking financial gain when one ticket apparently ended up with an individual enjoying hospitality with a body not among the three companies licensed by the RFU for official hospitality."

Saracens revealed Glen Jackson has signed a contractextension keeping the New Zealand-born fly-half and the Premiership's leading scorer at the club until 2010. Bath yesterday signed the back row forward James Scaysbrook until 2009.