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Kruis suspended for three weeks

Saracens lock George Kruis is available for the start of England's RBS 6 Nations campaign after receiving a three-week suspension for a dangerous tackle.

Kruis pleaded guilty before a Rugby Football Union disciplinary hearing in London after being cited for a tip tackle on wing David Halaifonua in Friday night's 24-23 Aviva Premiership defeat at Gloucester.

The 24-year-old will miss Saturday's crucial Champions Cup clash with Munster and the climax to the pool phase at Clermont the following weekend and can return to play on February 3.

He will be available for the Six Nations opener against Wales in Cardiff, although is unlikely to make the matchday squad with Courtney Lawes, Dave Attwood and Geoff Parling above him in England's second row pecking order.

Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall, speaking before the hearing had reached its verdict, anticipated that a ban was likely

"It doesn't look great. George hits him well and doesn't realise, so lets him go and then you're in trouble. It all depends on how the tackled player lands," McCall said.

"The referee thought a yellow card was sufficient and hopefully the hearing will find the same, but I'm not sure it will."

Kruis made his England debut in the autumn following a second row injury crisis, winning four caps as a replacement against New Zealand, South Africa, Samoa and Australia.

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