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The Canberra Raiders have released the following Statement regarding George Williams.

George, through his management, has requested on multiple occasions a release from his playing contract at the end of the 2021 season. The timing and conditions of the release suited George’s personal situation and the Club understood this.

As a Club, we were optimistic we could put measures in place to allow George to see out the duration of his contract. His family situation was discussed internally, and the Club offered George the support to ensure he and his partner could have an extended stay in England during the 2022 pre-season so they could be surrounded by family.

George’s final request for a release came on Monday evening. The following day George withdrew from training and the upcoming match against the Roosters. This decision prompted the Club to offer George an immediate release given the stress this was evidently causing he and his partner, thereby giving them the opportunity to return home earlier.

As a Club, we have a duty to act in the best interests of the Club, its members, sponsors and supporters. Sometimes the best interests of the Club do not match those of an individual. The Club therefore determined that granting George an immediate release would allow us to plan better for the Club’s future.

We would like to reiterate that it was the Clubs overwhelming preference to keep George until the end of next season, as he is a good person, well-liked and a valuable member of our Club. However, when this situation became untenable, we needed to act in the best interests of the Club and our future.