The unstoppable Hayne Train dream appears to be over for Jarryd Hayne and the NFL. The Australian footballer today announced his departure from the San Francisco 49ers after a roller coaster eight month stint at the flailing west coast team.
Hayne today released a statement through the 49ers citing his desire to compete in the 2016 Rio Olympic games after the Fiji Rugby Sevens team reached out to him. In the statement, Hayne expressed his deepest gratitude to his American minders and said that, “the Olympics has been something I have admired since I was a little boy, and it is an opportunity I feel very similar to me joining the NFL.”
He added, “I would like to thank the 49ers Faithful for your unwavering support. From day one you have always been in my corner and I can’t thank you enough for the love you’ve shown for the kid from down under. Signing off, your mate, number 38.”
General manager of the San Francisco 49ers Trent Baalke shared the same sentiments towards Hayne, saying that he had worked hard to earn his spot the game.
“He earned the right to wear a 49ers uniform and compete alongside the best in the game,” Baalke said.
“We fully support Jarryd’s decision to pursue another dream – representing the Fiji Rugby Sevens team in this summer’s Olympic games. We look forward to watching him in Rio and wish him continued success.”
Hayne will now join Fiji’s Sevens coach Ben Ryan who is keen to have Hayne on board as he fights for a spot in the twelve man squad amongst fourteen players. It may not be all smooth sailing for Hayne’s next transition though with former ASADA boss Richard Ings tweeting his doubts over Hayne eligibility to meet drug doping regulations of the Olympic games.
Slight problem mate
World Rugby require you to be in their registered testing pool 6 months to be eligible to play https://t.co/sM3Y6c4Loy
— Richard Ings (@ringsau) May 15, 2016
Only time will tell if Hayne can get past the red tape and stringent testing of WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency).
See Hayne’s full statement below:
“I’d like to thank Jed and the entire York family for giving me the opportunity to fulfill my dream of playing in the National Football League. I also want to thank Trent and his staff, as well as Jim Tomsula, Tom Rathman and the other coaches who invested in me to make this dream a reality. I’d also like to thank Coach Kelly for the opportunity to come back this year. The support and understanding from the 49ers organization was unbelievable when I let them know about my decision to pursue another dream. The past 12 months with the San Francisco 49ers have been absolutely incredible. I could not have predicted how far I have come as an NFL player. To not only be able to play in a game but also say that I started a game in the NFL is something that I will remember for a lifetime.
“I am retiring from the NFL because the Fiji Rugby Sevens team reached out to me about the opportunity to join the team for the upcoming Olympics, and I simply could not pass that chance up. The Olympics has been something I have admired since I was a little boy, and it is an opportunity I feel very similar to me joining the NFL.
“The 49ers organization has been incredibly supportive throughout my journey and I cannot thank them and the support staff enough. I am especially grateful to the strength and conditioning coaches, trainers and medical staff, equipment guys, public relations crew, chefs, logistics, and merchandise staff for their countless hours helping me in many different ways, so I could focus on football. Thank you to the fans from down under, as well as those around the world, who stood behind me and supported me along this amazing journey. I also want to thank the boys, especially my running back brothers, for their help and support in my transition to the NFL. I wish the team nothing but the best for the upcoming season.
“Last but not least, I would like to thank the 49ers Faithful for your unwavering support. From day one you have always been in my corner and I can’t thank you enough for the love you’ve shown for the kid from down under. Signing off, your mate, number 38.”