Griffiths feels Saracens deserved Saints’ champions status

TITLE WIN - Saints were crowned champions at Twickenham in May (Picture: Linda Dawson)
TITLE WIN - Saints were crowned champions at Twickenham in May (Picture: Linda Dawson)
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Saracens chief executive Ed Griffiths believes the current Aviva Premiership play-off system is unfair.

Griffiths insists the destination of the title should be decided by who finishes top of the regular season standings, rather than by who prevails in the end-of-season shootout.

Saints are the current champions, having beaten Saracens in the final moments of extra-time in May’s play-off final at Twickenham.

Jim Mallinder’s men had finished second in the regular season, but fought to the death to claim their first Premiership crown.

Saracens have since referred to themselves as ‘Premiership league winners’ on a number of occasions on their website, and Griffiths believes his team should be champions.

“Premiership rugby is still at a stage where we have play-offs. We don’t agree with that,” he told BBC Sport.

“It’s only there for money reasons and we don’t think if anything is done purely for money it’s the right thing.”

When Saracens won their only Premiership title to date in 2011, it was Leicester who finished top of the table.

Sarries have hit the summit at the end of the past two seasons, but Leicester and Saints have gone on to snatch glory via the play-offs.

And Griffiths added: “We think a league where everyone plays home and away should be decided by the league champions which is what the Premier League in football does and every other mature league in the world.

“However, we have play-offs. We understand the rules and we play to them and we want to win the league again. Our aim is to win the league.”