The Penrith Panthers have released centre Peta Hiku effective immediately, with the former New Zealand Test star to take up an opportunity in England.
Speculation had been mounting for months that Hiku, who was dropped to reserve grade when Josh Mansour returned from injury against the Bulldogs earlier this month, was on his way out of Penrith.
“Peta is an international-class footballer and has been an extremely popular member of our club,” Panthers Executive General Manager Phil Gould AM said.
“Unfortunately with the emergence of several of our young players and the way our team has developed, we can’t fit everyone in the team each week.
“From a salary cap perspective we always knew someone would probably have to move on.
“Peta received a great offer from a strong club in the UK and it presents a wonderful opportunity for Peta and his young family.
“We wish them well and sincerely thank Peta for his time here at the Panthers. He is always welcome back at our club.”
Hiku departs the Panthers having scored six tries in 20 NRL appearances for the club.