South Africa scrum-half Cobus Reinach will leave Northampton Saints at the end of the season.

The 29-year-old pivot has been a revelation since arriving at Franklin’s Gardens from Super Rugby franchise the Sharks in 2017.

Reinach, a World Cup winner with the Springboks last year, has decided to move on after three campaigns with Northampton and is reportedly set to join Montpellier.

The pacy playmaker said: “I love playing for Saints and living in Northamptonshire. We have a fantastic group of coaches and staff, and an exciting squad that I believe can challenge for the major honours, so this has not been an easy decision for me to make.

“I’d like to thank everyone for making the last three seasons so memorable; I’ll be sad to leave some great friends and team-mates.

“Saints will always have a special place in my heart and I look forward to giving everything I’ve got to make sure we finish the season with some silverware.”

Chris Boyd, Saints’ director of rugby, said: “While we’re disappointed to lose a player of Cobus’ quality, we respect that in the final years of his professional career he’s made a decision with the long-term future of his family in mind.

“Saints supporters love watching him play; he has provided them with plenty of memorable moments here at Franklin’s Gardens.

“I’ve been delighted with the form of Henry Taylor since his arrival at the start of the season, and with the emergence of Connor Tupai from our Academy set-up this year – plus getting Alex Mitchell back from injury in the coming weeks will feel like a new signing for us.

“Cobus is putting all his focus and energy into ensuring that Northampton have as much success as possible for the second half of the season, and we will wish him well after that.”

Saints sit second in the Premiership table having won six of their first eight games.