London - Harlequins flyhalf Ben Botica will leave the Premiership
club to join Top 14 side Montpellier as a replacement for Toulon-bound
Harlequins made the announcement on Wednesday that Botica is among a
number of players who will move on from the club following the
conclusion of the 2015/16 season.
Botica joined Harlequins for the 2012/13 season and made an immediate
impact, notably during his Heineken Cup debut, kicking 19 points in the
victory over Biarritz.
In the last four seasons the 26-year-old has made 93 appearances,
scoring 544 points. He was an integral member of the 2013 LV= Cup
winning side and made nine consecutive 80 minute performances this
season in the absence of Nick Evans.
Botica admitted that it wasn't easy to leave Harlequins.
"It was a very hard decision for me to leave Harlequins," he told the club's official website.
"The last four years, in terms of my development as a player, have
been priceless. Being around such a great group, in playing ability and
as people, is something you can’t buy.
"Had it not been for Conor calling me up four years ago in New
Zealand, I don’t know where I would be with my rugby career, so I’m
truly grateful to the club for the opportunity they gave me having not
seen too much of me.
"It’s beginning to hit home how much I will miss this club and the
people associated with it. I’ve been given a new and exciting challenge
in France with Montpellier, but my immediate focus is to help Harlequins
finish top six and win European silverware."
Scrumhalf Tito Tebaldi will return to Italy to play for PRO12 side
Treviso. Having played eight times for Quins this season, Tebaldi played
an integral role while Karl Dickson and Danny Care were absent from the
squad due to injury and international selection.
Kieran Treadwell will leave the Academy after two seasons to join
Ulster. The second row, qualified to play for Ireland, joins the Irish
side on a two-year deal.
Injury dispensation signings Beau Robinson and Sam Egerton bolstered
the squad during an injury hit part of the season and made valuable
contributions in the Premiership.
First year Academy member Luke White will also leave the club. The
flyhalf, who was dual registered with Dorking, helped Harlequins to the
Finals of the Singha Premiership Rugby Sevens last August.
Confirming the departing players, Harlequins' director of rugby Conor
O’Shea said: "On behalf of everyone at Harlequins I would like to thank
Ben, Tito, Kieran, Beau, Sam and Luke.
"They have each made their own mark on the Club in the day to day
environment and during testing times on the field. I know everyone at
Harlequins is grateful to them and I would like to wish them the best of
luck in their future careers."