Coronavirus: Saracens players apologise after meeting for coffee
Saracens: "Management has spoken to the players involved, all of whom have apologised for any upset they may have caused"
Last Updated: 07/05/20 8:58pm
England international Billy Vunipola was among five Saracens players who have apologised for violating the lockdown rules that are in place to curb the spread of coronavirus.
Vunipola and team-mates Alex Goode, Sean Maitland, Nick Isiekwe and Josh Ibuanokpe were pictured meeting for coffee in St Albans on Monday.
People from different households have been barred from socialising since the government brought in lockdown measures on March 23 and, if they have to go out, they are also required to maintain a distance of at least two metres from people who do not live in their house.
Saracens said they have spoken to the players, who accepted they had made an error in judgement.
"The club was very disappointed to learn about a small group of players being sighted together in St Albans," read a Saracens statement.
"The government guidelines on social distancing are very clear and the club has been vigorous in its messaging to all players and staff about the importance of adhering to these guidelines.
"Management has spoken to the players involved, all of whom have apologised for any upset they may have caused.
"We are confident this will not happen again."
England's top-flight rugby season has been suspended since March and several Saracens players have been asked to defer some of their wages in order to help the club cope financially.
The reigning champions will drop into the Championship at the end of this campaign after being automatically relegated for breaching salary cap rules.