The Warriors have today confirmed out-of-favour centre Konrad Hurrell has been released from his contract.
Hurrell, who was contracted to the end of the 2018 season, leaves the club after making 71 NRL appearances since his debut in 2012.
Hurrell’s management confirmed an announcement will be made today or early tomorrow as to where the 24-year-old’s playing future lies.
Hurrell’s future at the Warriors has been under scrutiny all season and he has been linked with both the Gold Coast Titans and Manly Sea Eagles in the NRL. Several clubs in the UK Super League, including Hull KR, as well as rugby clubs here and abroad have also expressed interest in signing him.
“After discussions between Konrad, his management (Inventus Sports) and us we’ve reached a mutual agreement for him to be released now,” said Warriors managing director Jim Doyle.
“We would like to thank Konrad for his contribution since coming into our development system.
He has been a popular member of the club and we wish him all the best for the future.”
Hurrell said he had mixed emotions at first about leaving the Warriors but was now excited as he looked forward to the rest of his career.
“I will always be thankful to the Warriors for all they have done for me and the way they have helped me develop as a rugby league player,” he said.
“I’m grateful to all the boys I have played alongside, all the people at the club and also the members and fans.”
Hurrell is understood to have been unhappy at being punished for his involvement in accompanying five team-mates on an unsanctioned late night out in Auckland.
Hurrell was the only player who did not admit to taking prescription pills and energy drinks but, along with the rest of the group, was stood down from test selection heading into last week’s internationals. He was then embroiled in further controversy after sending an ill-timed retweet that added fuel to speculation coach Andrew McFadden had lost the support of his players.
McFadden was frustrated by Hurrell’s actions and immediately questioned if Hurrell had a future at the club. Recently he said he had no issue with Hurrell but that “we need to make decisions that are best for the organisation”.
Despite media consistently reporting Hurrell did not admit to any drug taking, his management were eager for the club to clear his name of any wrongdoing with a clean character reference potentially assisting his attempts to find another club before the NRL’s June 30 player transfer deadline.
His exit comes as a great disappointment for Warriors fans, with Hurrell earning cult status among the Mt Smart Stadium faithful due to his natural ability as one of the NRL’s most damaging ball-carriers.
But he has struggled for consistency, particularly on defence, and he was also forced to adjust his running style after kneeing incidents involving Cronulla’s Anthony Tupou and Manly’s Jake Trbojevic.
Hurrell made three NRL appearances off the bench this year, the last of them against Manly on April 3.