Saracens and England second row George Kruis appears to be on his way out of Allianz Park.
The 29-year-old lock is set to ease tensions on Saracens financial outlook and take up a lucrative offer to move to Japan at the end of the current season.
Since the installment of Ed Griffiths as chief executive last week, the South African has been transparent in the toll taken on the club by the £5.36m fine it has had to pay for breaching the salary cap.
It comes after the reigning Premiership champions were found by a PRL investigation to have exceeded the £7m limit between 2016 and 2019.
And with the arrivals of high-profile signings of Elliot Daly and Jack Singleton, questions have been posed as to how Saracens’ salary cap is taking form this season.
Alluding to the point that he is examining ways to bring Saracens back to a ‘level playing field’, Griffiths revealed that might entail reducing ‘the headcount by letting people go or alternatively you reduce the salaries of those already here’.
According to RugbyPass, Kruis is one of the big name players who give the club some breathing room in their cap management with a move to the Japan Top League on the cards.
Kruis could even join former England and British & Irish Lions teammate Ben Te’o at Super Rugby team Sunwolves, though the JRFU-backed franchise aren’t able to offer the kind of deal which has seen the likes of Dan Carter, Matt Giteau and Kieran Read play in the Japanese domestic league.
A move overseas would see Kruis become an outcast to the England team, with the selection criteria which prevented former European player of the year Steffon Armitage, then of Toulon, from representing the team under former coach Stuart Lancaster.
Kruis is nine caps away from reaching the 50-appearances milestone for his country, receiving high acclaim when chosen by Warren Gatland to start for the Lions in the first Test against the All Blacks during their tour of New Zealand in 2017.
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