Catalan Dragons: Winger Damien Blanch returns to Australia

Ireland international winger Damien Blanch has ended his Catalan Dragons contract early by mutual consent to return to his native Australia.

Blanch, 30, joined the Dragons from Wakefield in 2011, and went on to score 42 tries in 70 Super League games for the Perpignan club.

"I left Australia in 2005, it's a long time far from home," Blanch said. 

"After a such long time of travelling, I feel it's the right time to get back to Australia."

His time in England took him to Castleford Tigers, Widnes Vikings and Wakefield before the switch to the south of France, and earned him a place in the Ireland squad at the 2008 World Cup.

Catalans, who finished seventh in this year's Super League competition, were knocked out of the play-offs by Hull FC last Friday.

In addition to Blanch's exit, veteran second-row Steve Menzies is retiring and France international prop Remi Casty is also departing to join former coach Trent Robinson at NRL minor premiers Sydney Roosters.