Gower quits Broncos for NRL
Former Australia international half-back Craig Gower has played his last match for London Broncos, the Super League club have announced.
The 35-year-old, who quit as Broncos captain a week ago, has been released from the 18 months left on his contract to enable him to resume his career in the NRL.
The Londoners say Gower will leave the club by "mutual consent" and return to Australia for personal reasons.
It is thought he has agreed a short-term deal with Newcastle Knights, where former Kangaroos boss Wayne Bennett now coaches, to provide cover for utility player Kurt Gidley and former Leeds Rhinos hooker Danny Buderus.
London chief executive Gus Mackay said: "We'd like to thank Craig for his time in London with the Broncos. He was an exemplary trainer and always gave 100% on the pitch."
Gower joined the Broncos ahead of the 2012 season and signed a contract extension last November taking him to the end of 2014. His appearance in last Saturday's 30-30 draw with Castleford Tigers was his 45th for the club.
Gower led Penrith to the 2003 NRL title before switching codes with French rugby union club Bayonne in 2007 and he went on to represent Italy before returning to rugby league with the Broncos ahead of the 2012 season.
A spokesman for the Knights said: "Following a number of media enquiries linking Craig Gower to the Newcastle Knights, the club can confirm they are in discussions with his management."
Gower was expected to play for Italy in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup.