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New Zealand

Crusaders cut Guildford loose

23rd May 2014 13:33

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Free to leave Christchurch: Zac Guildford

The Crusaders have parted ways with former All Black winger Zac Guildford, who is now free to join Clermont.

The 25-year-old's departure brings to an end to months of speculation about the 10-cap internationals limited role at the franchise this year.

Reports in the Kiwi press suggest that both parties have been extremely frustrated by the way their relationship has deteriorated.

Guildford signed a two-year deal - with an option of a third - with Clermont in January and the Crusaders reportedly feel let down by his apparent lack of loyalty after they threw him a lifeline by extending his contract to the end of this season following four weeks spent in a rehabilitation clinic for his problems with alcohol.

Guildford meanwhile is upset by his lack of game time. Coach Todd Blackadder has not selected him this season with his outings have been limited to the franchise's development side and grassroots clubs.

Blackadder has maintained that Guildford has not been included in his plans because of fitness issues but reports suggest that there is far more to the situation as the young wing's lifestyle did not sit well with the Crusaders management,.

Despite the players request for a release several months ago, he has been kept around as injury cover.

The New Zealand Rugby Union is expected to confirm his contract termination soon meaning he will be free to join Clermont ahead of the new Top 14 season.

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