Ruan Pienarr played his final game of Ulster on Saturday, and had to fight back the tears during his post-match interview as he and his young family have become very attached to a beautiful part of the world since arriving in 2010.
Despite wanting to not only continue his playing career with Ulster, but also to keep his family in an area where they have settled and become a part of the community, the IRFU have determined that he presents an obstruction to young Irish talent coming through, and have thus taken the decision to end his time in Ireland as his contract expires.
It's harsh, and a blow for both Ulster and Pienaar's family, but ultimately it's a decision that has been made without emotional consideration. Former Ireland head coach Eddie O'Sullivan made that point after perfectly summing up why the situation is so sad on Against The Head on Monday evening.
— RTÉ Rugby (@RTErugby) May 8, 2017
Spot on from Eddie.
Pienaar has become part of the Ulster family, so for him to be forced to move on despite badly wanting to stay and the Ulster setup wanting him around, he has to find somewhere else to play.
Typically, Pienaar responded with class at the start of this season when the situation popped up, stating that he understood the reasoning behind the IRFU's decision, but that doesn't make it any less painfull.
He will certainly be missed, and if that wasn't obvious already then the scenes at the Kingspan on Saturday spoke volumes.