Statement: Exeter and Wales star forced to retire aged 25 - Page 3 of 3 - Ruck

Statement: Exeter and Wales star forced to retire aged 25

#2. Eben Etzebeth (South Africa)

The world Cup-winning lock is undoubtedly world-class, but he is also one of the dirtiest players in the sport.

If your team has played against him, you will not be a fan. A proper sh**house, but huge biceps.

Eben Etzebeth facts:

  1. Etzebeth may be 6ft 8in and more than 19st (2.03m/123kg) now but he did not dominate rugby in his early school days, leaving his growing until later in his teens
  2.  In 2016, aged 24, Etzebeth became the youngest player to play 50 Tests for the Springboks in the game against Australia at Brisbane
  3. The lock was voted South African Young Player of the Year in 2012 and 2013, and was nominated for World Player of the Year in 2013 when the award was won by New Zealand’s Kieran Read.
  4. Etzebeth’s biceps have a circumference of 19 inches… 48.26cm.
  5. In 2017, Etzebeth became the 59th player to captain the Springboks in a Test match when he led the side in the match against France at Ellis Park

#1. Owen Farrell (England)

Could it be anybody else? Farrell fits the label “our guy” better than most, meaning you love to hate him unless he’s in your squad. Then you’d go to the end’s of the earth to defend him. The former England captain, also known as ‘Shoulder boy’ for his high tackling, does himself no favours with his poor tackling technique.

Owen Farrell facts:

  1. The Saracens star went to school with England teammate George Ford
  2. His education began in rugby league – he joined Wigan St Patricks at the age of eight
  3. He became the youngest ever player to appear in English professional rugby, making his debut aged 17 and 11 days. This record was later beaten by schoolmate Ford
  4. It’s well known that Owen is the son of Ireland head coach Andy Farrell. However, it’s less commonly know that his uncle Sean O’Loughlin is also a rugby league legend, winning 34 caps for Great Britain between 1993 and 2009
  5. He was not at first registered as a Farrell, but took mum Colleen’s family name of O’Loughlin. The couple married in 1995, changing Owen’s surname to Farrell the following year.