Rugby Union


Cipriani and Melbourne Rebels split

Melbourne Rebels' English import Danny Cipriani has left the Super Rugby club.

It's believed to be by mutual agreement.

Cipriani, who has played seven Tests for England, had been set to leave the Rebels at the end of the season after signing with the Sale Sharks in northern England.

The 24-year-old five-eighth had a troubled first year with Melbourne in 2011 and was sidelined for a month due to off-field disciplinary issues.

But the Englishman appeared more settled this season, seemingly relishing his growing combination with Wallabies backline stars James O'Connor and Kurtley Beale.

However his form wasn't good in his last match and there was talk of him being relegated to the bench.

It's a blow for the Rebels who have lost O'Connor until June after he suffered liver damage in their last-start loss to the NSW Waratahs.

Kurtley Beale is believed to be the Rebels' choice for five-eighth until O'Connor returns from injury.