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From the Beeb


Wigan back in mire after penalty


Wigan have been plunged back into serious relegation trouble after being docked two points for breaching the Super League salary cap last season.

The club were also fined £50,000 because they spent between 52-55% of their income on salaries in 2005.


Clubs are permitted to spend no more than 50% of their income on players' wages, up to a maximum of £1.8m a year.


The loss of points leaves Wigan level with Wakefield and Catalans Dragons at the foot of the Super League.


French side Catalans cannot go down this season because as a new side to the Super League they have three years' immunity from relegation.


A statement from the Rugby Football League said: "The panel found that in the course of the breach, the Wigan club was guilty of conduct prejudicial to the interests of the game. They have been fined £50,000 plus costs in respect of this."


The RFL said on Monday that Bradford also had a "case to answer" relating to alleged breaches of the salary cap but their case will be heard at a later date.


Meanwhile, Castleford, Hull, St Helens and Wakefield have all been found guilty of minor breaches of the code.


Cas - 2005 National League One winners - and Wakefield were cautioned, while Hull and St Helens were fined £5,000.


The four clubs found guilty have a right to appeal against the compliance commissioner's decision.


Hull have accepted the punishment, revealing that £4,000 of the fine has been suspended.


"The board are determined to give our coaching staff the maximum opportunity to be successful while working as closely to the salary cap as possible," said Hull chief executive David Plummer.


"Unfortunately it is possible to inadvertently exceed that limit."


In addition to the £1.8m maximum player wage cap, clubs are also bound by the "20/20 rule" whereby they can only have a maximum of 20 players earning in excess of £20,000 a year.


St Helens, Hull and Halifax were the last Super League clubs to be punished for breaching salary cap rules, back in 2003.


All three had overspent in 2002 and were deducted two points.


Punishments can range from a fine to a deduction of six points depending on the size of the breach.

Edited by jon_hall
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