The Gold Coast Titans have released anti-vaxxer Bryce Cartwright from the club as concerns for his welfare grow.
Cartwright hasn’t played for the Titans since being dropped in July and relocating to NSW with his wife Shanelle and their two children, Koa and Naia.
The club confirmed on Thursday they had released the 25-year-old from the final year of a lucrative contract, reportedly worth $450,000.
The Titans allegedly hold private concerns over Cartwright’s welfare and team captain Kevin Proctor told The Daily Telegraph he was worried about his former teammate.
‘I know he’s had some family dramas and he’s gone to Sydney to sort some stuff out,’ he said.
Anti-vaxxer and rugby league player Bryce Cartwright (pictured with wife Shanelle) has been released from the last year of his contract with the Gold Coast Titans with some in the club holding concerns for his welfare
‘It’s disappointing to lose him through this period but hopefully he is OK with his family.’
The Titans are expected to release an official statement regarding the termination on Thursday afternoon.
Just one week before he was sacked the second-rower said he was struggling to stay motivated.
‘The critics don’t see what you go through. My knees swell up and I have to get it drained all the time. We get paid good money, but it’s not an easy ride,’ he said.
The anti-vaxxer made headlines in May when he was granted permission to play despite refusing a mandatory influenza vaccination under the NRL’s return-to-play regulations.
The Titans submitted an application for a medical exemption which was granted by Queensland’s chief medical officer Jeannette Young.
The Titans are expected to release a statement on Thursday regarding Cartwright (pictured with wife Shanelle and their son Koa), club captain Kevin Proctor said the playing group had been left in the dark
The anti-vaxxer made headlines in May when he was granted permission to play despite refusing a mandatory influenza vaccination under the NRL’s return-to-play regulations
Former Home and Away actress Isabel Lucas praised Cartwright for refusing the league’s mandatory flu shot
Cartwright and his wife sparked controversy last year when they publicly declared they would not vaccinate their young children.
Touted as a future NSW State of Origin prospect following a strong start to his career at the Panthers, Cartwright made the move to the Titans to work under ex-coach Garth Brennan.
The pair had worked together at Penrith but Cartwright struggled with form and was criticised for poor defensive efforts.
When Brennan was sacked in the middle of 2019, Cartwright’s future at the club was also unclear with many viewing him as a costly relic of the former coach’s tenure.
It marks the end of an underwhelming stint on the Gold Coast for Cartwright following his arrival from Penrith ahead of the 2018 season.
It’s unclear where Cartwright’s future lies with the 25-year-old admitting earlier in the year he was battling a chronic knee issue.
Cartwright (pictured at Titans training) and his wife Shanelle relocated to New South Wales with their sons, Koa and Naia, after he was dropped from the NRL side in July