NRL: Soward leaves Dragons

Jamie Soward. Photo /Getty Images
Jamie Soward. Photo /Getty Images

Jamie Soward has played his last game for St George Illawarra after being granted an immediate release to join English Super League strugglers the London Broncos.

Soward was axed by Dragons coach Steve Price two weeks ago after he missed a last-gasp penalty that would have sent a clash with Canterbury into golden point at ANZ Stadium.

He then faced the ignominy of playing in the NSW Cup for the Illawarra Cutters in the curtain-raiser to the NRL side's win over Newcastle at Hunter Stadium in round 13.

Soward will join Penrith next year after signing a four-year deal with the Panthers in April, but will head to the UK to take up a short-term contract with the London Broncos, who sit second last on the Super League ladder.

The former NSW five-eighth replaces Craig Gower at the club after the 35-year-old's recent return to the NRL with Newcastle.

"After consultation with the coaching staff, the Dragons board determined that granting the early release requested by Jamie and his management was in the best interests of both parties," Dragons CEO Peter Doust said in a statement.

"It is fair to say that mid-season signings and transfers are not ideal for clubs, players or fans but that is the system in which we work.

"This is not how the club or Jamie envisaged things would end and efforts were made to avoid this circumstance but both parties agree that this is the best outcome.

"Jamie has made a significant contribution to our club. We thank him for his services and wish him well for his future."

Soward, who was part of the Dragons' side that won the 2010 grand final, said he was grateful to the club for allowing him to take up the offer to play overseas.

"I would like to thank the Dragons and everyone associated with the club for everything that they have done for me throughout my time at the club," said Soward.

"St George Illawarra is a special club with great people and I have some great memories to take with me, especially the grand final win in 2010."

- AAP

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