Penrith Panthers forward Bryce Cartwright has been granted an immediate release from the club to link with the Gold Coast Titans.
The release was finalised on Saturday, allowing Cartwright to join the Titans on a four-year deal.
NRL.com reported on Wednesday that the Panthers had told Cartwright that he needed to return to top form in the 2018 Telstra Premiership or risk being asked to look for another club.
However it’s understood Cartwright wanted a fresh start after a emotionally draining 2017 with off field issues plaguing his life.
The 23-year-old second-rower has experienced a turbulent past couple of seasons due to injuries, off-field issues and up-and-down form.
Gold Coast are coached by former Panthers lower-grade mentor Garth Brennan, who has played a large part in Cartwright’s development through the ranks at Penrith.
“It’s obviously disappointing to be releasing a player like Bryce Cartwright, however, we appreciate his desire to seek such a change,” Panthers executive general manager Phil Gould said.
“We hope that this move proves successful for Bryce, both on and off the field.
“Hopefully some time in the future he finds his way back to Panthers.
“We wish Bryce and his young family all the very best.”