Connacht yesterday cancelled their deal to sign Fijian winger Sevu Reece after his appearance in court on a domestic violence charge in New Zealand this week.
The 21-year-old, who faced the Lions for the Provincial Barbarians during last year's tour, was hailed as "an exciting attacking player" by delighted Connacht coach Andy Friend who confirmed the two-year deal in May.
However, although he was discharged without conviction in a Hamilton court on Monday, the details of Reece's actions on a night out in July made it impossible for Connacht to go through with the deal.
According to the police account, Reece shouted at his partner before grabbing her and dragging her to the ground. She suffered injuries to her upper face, bruising to the left side of her waist and left knee.
They have since reconciled.
Having admitted to having a problem with alcohol, Reece pleaded guilty to the charge and was handed the discharge and ordered to pay the woman NZ$750 (€422).
Having reviewed details of the case, Connacht and the IRFU informed him they would not be proceeding with his signing.