Despite a four-week ban for a dangerous tackle, England captain Owen Farrell is expected to be available for their Six Nations opener against Scotland.
If he completes the World Rugby coaching intervention programme, his suspension will be reduced to three weeks.
This would allow him to be selected by new England manager Steve Borthwick for the match against Scotland on February 4th.
On Friday, Farrell was cited for making contact with Gloucester forward Jack Clement’s head with his shoulder.
Saracens’ European games against Lyon and Edinburgh, as well as their Premiership trip to Bristol, will undoubtedly be missed by the 31-year-old.
The final week of his ban will be ignored if he completes the necessary intervention program.
With fly-halves Marcus Smith and George Ford both out injured, it provides some relief to new England head coach Steve Borthwick.
The offence, which Farrell admitted to, was deemed to be in the middle of the dangerous tackle spectrum, and a six-week ban was imposed as a starting point.
For his early admission of the charge and “exemplary” behavior during the hearing, he was given two weeks’ mitigation.
“The panel accepts that the player believed he struck the chest of his opponent, but the footage confirms he was incorrect,” Farrell’s disciplinary report stated.
“We acknowledge there was no injury to the opposition player and have taken this into account in our decision.
“However, we do not believe that this affects our conclusion that a high level of danger existed.”
Farrell has been banned for a dangerous tackle for the second time in less than two and a half years.
In September 2020, he was suspended for five weeks for a dangerous tackle on Charlie Atkinson in a game against Wasps; the offence was deemed severe enough to warrant a 10-week ban.