Ofisa to make Connacht exit

Connacht Rugby have announced that flanker Ray Ofisa will leave the province at the end of the season.

The 31-year-old has been an integral part of the Connacht set-up since he joined in 2007 from North Otago in New Zealand.

A favourite among the Connacht fan base, Ofisa earned his 100th cap for Connacht against Treviso earlier this season.

He has been part of some of the biggest matches in the clubs history including the Heineken Cup match against Toulouse and South Africa's visit in 2007.

He was unfortunate to miss Connacht's clash against his native Samoa when they arrived in the Sportsground in 2010.

Reacting to the news, Head Coach Eric Elwood was fulsome in his praise of Ofisa’s character both on and off the pitch.

"I'd like to pay tribute to the hard work, commitment and respect that Ray has shown throughout his six years here at Connacht.

“He is one of the quietest men in the squad but once he crosses the whitewash he can turn a match in a flash with a moment of brilliance.

“In his time here he has really bought into the ethos of everything we are about and I know Ray considers Connacht a family away from home.

“It's a credit to the man and his strength of character that even now he is finishing the season on a high and on behalf of myself, the management, the players and all our supporters I would like to wish Ray every success for the future."

Ofisa won’t be the only player bidding farewell to the Sportsground as team manager Tim Allnutt revealed that Henry Fa'afili, Dermot Murphy, Dylan Rogers, Jamie Stephens, Brian Tuohy have not been offered contracts for the 2012/13 season.

"Following discussions with Head Coach Eric Elwood and his coaching team it was decided that these players would not be offered contracts for next season,” Allnutt stated.

“On behalf of all at Connacht Rugby I would like to wish them all the very best of luck in their future careers and thank them for their professionalism and commitment whilst they were at the club."

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