Ulster are currently top of the Guinness PRO12
Ruan Pienaar will leave Ulster at the end of the season on account of the IRFU's succession policy.
Pienaar, who has been at the province for the past seven years, faces and enforced departure from the club in an effort to ensure that there will be a minimum of two Irish-qualified players per position playing for the three traditional major provinces.
Neither the club nor Pienaar welcomed the decision but speaking to Off The Ball's Ger Gilroy this evening, Ulster Director of Rugby Les Kiss says that the club accepts the reasons behind the decision.
"There are decisions that have to be made in balance. Ruan has been there for a long time and we understand that. We certainly put some options on the table to mitigate that and negotiate timelines of how many games he played etc but that's the process you try to negotiate it. You're never going to escape that people are going to have an opinion around it. It's about respecting all parts of the story and one of the key things is that Ruan did wanna stay, it just wasn't possible."
He added that the club will now look to other options to replace the South African.
"There are some critical decisions that needed to be made in the interests of making sure that nines are prevalent in the Irish system. We understand the balance and there's no animosity in any way from our side of things. We have to move on, we've got Paul Marshall, Aongus Lloyd, Dave Shanahan and we've also got the services of Aaron Cairns at the moment ."
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