Former Springbok, Stormers and Force flyhalf Peter Grant has announced his retirement from all rugby.
The 34-year-old made the decision to retire after receiving specialist advice from doctors with regard to past head injuries.
The versatile back has been playing for the Force since making his Vodacom Super Rugby debut for the side in 2016. He also amassed over 880 points for the Stormers over 10 years and earned five Test caps for the Springboks, debuting against Australia in 2007.
Grant said that he is happy to be able to experience rugby as a spectator and spend more time with his family.
‘There is a lot of excitement because now I get to go to the games and watch it with my kids, though it’s going to be a challenge. It is also going to be a big change and I am excited for that.
‘But initially it was shock and then disappointment and uncertainty, because this is all I know and I was really getting geared up for another season. You go through the phases and there is a lot of emotion about that.’
As a distinguished playmaker, Grant travelled the world through his love for the sport, also playing for the Kobe Steelers in Japan and La Rochelle in France.
‘For me, one of the highlights that comes to mind is that I’ve been able to travel with rugby, and rugby has taken me to so many places and I have met some incredible people through this game,’ he said.
‘When you start up playing rugby in South Africa, all the Australians and the New Zealanders are your competitors, but when I got to travel I got to play with these guys. The characters you meet along the way and the friendships that you make, that is definitely one of the greatest highlights of all.’
Force head coach Tim Sampson said Grant’s retirement has been upsetting for the whole team and he is a great loss to the rugby community.
‘The recent news was devastating for every member of the squad and staff and naturally our thoughts are with Peter and his family. Within our programme and during games Peter was a calming influence on those around him, so to lose someone of Peter’s experience leaves a huge void.
‘Peter has contributed immensely to the Force during his time at the club and he will be missed. It is never nice to see a player’s intended retirement plan taken out of their control and dictated by injury.’
💬”It is also going to be a big change and I am excited for that,” – @PeterGrant_ .
It’s been a pleasure to have you as part of the Western Force!
— Western Force (@westernforce) January 30, 2019
Photo: Paul Kane/Getty Images