Ireland and Leinster rugby player Jamie Heaslip announced his retirement from the sport on Monday morning.
In a statement issued via Twitter, the 34-year-old said that he retires following medical advice.
Time will get us all, but it’s cornered me earlier than I hoped. Every professional sportsperson always hopes to be able leave their chosen sport on their terms but too often that’s not the case.
I have had to take on board the medical advice that I have been given and after talking to Sheena and my family I have taken the difficult decision to retire with immediate effect from playing rugby in order to ensure my future well being.
I’m very proud to finish my career as a one club man having played amongst some of the best in the game, who are all like a family of brothers to me.
My goal when I started my professional career 14 years ago was to leave the the jerseys that I wore in a better place and I hope I have done that.
Thank you to the IRFU, Leinster Rugby, all the coaches, medical staff, back room staff, sponsors, media, supporters and most importantly my wife, family, friends and fellow players for helping me to make my dreams come true.
I’ve had the time of my life on and off the rugby pitch but now its time for the next chapter.
Heaslip won 95 caps for his country making his international debut in the 61-17 win over the Pacific Islands in November 2006 and captaining the national side on 13 occasions.
Of his 95 Ireland caps he played the full 80 minutes on 72 occasions illustrating his value as both a player and a leader to the national team.
His last appearance in the green shirt was against Wales in the 2017 RBS 6 Nations Championship in Cardiff. He scored 13 tries for his country including the World Rugby Try of the Year against Italy in 2016.