Eagle John flies back to United States
Bath Rugby have been unable to hang on to the services of US Eagles skipper John van der Giessen.
The 14-cap lock forward was drafted in by the club on a short-term contract in September after second-rowers Peter Short and Scott Hobson picked up long-term injuries
The duo remain on the medical list and Bath were keen to retain van der Giessen, but to no avail.
"We wanted to keep him longer but either couldn't come to an agreement or the timing wasn't quite right," said Bath forwards coach Martin Haag.
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"It would have been nice to have kept him for another four or five weeks. Perhaps he wanted longer, I don't know. It's for the powers that be to sort that side of things out.
"John had some personal issues that he needed to sort out back in America.
"It's a shame because he had a couple of good games recently and perhaps he could have played a bigger part over the next few weeks. But that's the way it is and you move on."
Van der Giessen's opportunities were limited by an injury picked up with the Eagles in November but he chalked up three starts for Bath.
"He did a great job for us," said Haag. "He fitted in really well.
"John's been really positive for the club. He never moaned and groaned, he got in the mix and always did what he had to do for us."
Ignacio Fernandez Lobbe – another lock signed as cover in September – remains at Bath, while first-choice second-rowers Stuart Hooper and Danny Grewcock are also fit.
Most Premiership squads have a quartet of locks so van der Giessen's exit leaves Bath a little light in that division, although loose forward Ben Skirving can step up a row.
"If needs be, one of the back row will have to stick their hand up and get in there but hopefully it won't come to that," added Haag.