Bulls and Springbok winger Sbu Nkosi part ways by mutual consent

Bulls and Springbok winger Sbu Nkosi part ways by mutual consent

Springbok winger Sbu Nkosi has officially exited the Bulls by mutual consent, the Pretoria outfit announced on Monday.

According to the Bulls, Nkosi, who was part of the Boks' 2019 Rugby World Cup-winning squad, is eager to leave the Loftus Versfeld side.

It's been a difficult period for the gifted player since he reported missing in December 2022 after going AWOL for three weeks.

The exciting winger, who scored two tries on his South Africa Test debut against England in 2018, was later found at his father's house in eMalahleni, Mpumalanga.

After taking a break from rugby with the full support of his team, Nkosi returned to action with the Bulls in their URC loss to the Stormers at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria in February.

But he's struggled to nail down a starting spot in the side since his return, finding himself behind the likes of Canan Moodie and Kurt-Lee Arendse in the pecking order.

The final straw likely came when he took a swipe at his Bulls teammates on social media following a match he played for a World XV against the Barbarians in late May.

Nkosi scored two tries after starting on the left wing for the Steve Hansen-coached side and said afterwards: "It was reviving to my passion, to spend a mere week with men who are pure of heart. A break from being judged by men who are bigger in their minds than they are in reality."

Unsurprisingly, his time at the club is now over after the Bulls confirmed his departure on their official website, saying the wing's exit was by "mutual consent".

"The Blue Bulls Company has agreed to the early termination of Sbu Nkosi's contract by mutual consent and the 27-year-old will leave the club with immediate effect," the Bulls said in a statement.

"After a season in the capital, Nkosi's adventure at the Bulls comes to an end with the conclusion of the 2022-23 rugby calendar as the player looks to pursue his rugby elsewhere."

Bulls CEO Edgar Rathbone revealed that Nkosi felt it was time for him to move on.

"I would like to thank Sbu for all that he has contributed towards our campaigns during his time with us," Rathbone said.

"I know it wasn't an easy time for him personally, but I am confident the support we provided to him was invaluable.

"Having a Springbok winger of his calibre in our team has been a pleasure.

"I know he now feels as though it is the best time to move on and we respect his wishes."