Top 14 club Pau has confirmed the sacking of former New Zealand international Tom Taylor for breaching lockdown rules amid the pandemic coronavirus.
The 31-year-old had left France without seeking permission despite the club ordering all the players to remain available immediately when the lockdown restrictions eases.
Taylor joined Pau from Toulon in 2016 and has one-year contract still left with the Top 14 club. He has played three Tests for New Zealand, all of it coming in 2013 and had featured for Canterbury and Crusaders in the past.
"On March 17, 2020, the club noted that Mr. Tom Taylor had left the national territory without any prior authorisation from his employer even though all players were asked to remain at the disposal of the club and to respect government measures in as part of the fight against Covid-19," read a statement from the club.
"This personal decision, contrary to all the instructions that had been given by the club since March 13, is all the more illegitimate since it was not justified. He put the team and all the staff in the most complete disarray since there was then no information on the dates on which the championship could resume and it was therefore necessary that the players were all immediately available in the event of a resumption of activity, which all his teammates understood and respected."