All Blacks Sevens player Toby Arnold has given up on his Olympic dream to sign a two-year deal with French club Lyon.
His French contract starts next month, meaning Arnold won't be playing for the Bay of Plenty Steamers in this year's national championship.
The 25-year-old suffered a serious knee injury last year. Two operations and months of rehab forced a rethink about his future.
Clearly, financial security was foremost in his mind.
The cost has been a tilt at the Olympics after winning a gold medal at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and being part of the world series wins across 2010-12.
"This has been the hardest decision I have had to make in my career," he said.
"While I am excited and nervous about the challenge ahead of me in France, I have been honoured to play for my country and province and I have not taken the decision to leave that behind lightly."
Lyon are in the second tier of French rugby and desperate to return to the Top 14.
- Fairfax Media
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