Former Springbok centre Jaque Fourie has officially retired from all rugby after suffering a number of niggles that have prevented a comeback with the Force.
Fourie joined the Force as a defence coach and initially planned to combine that with a return to the field.
However, the 35-year-old has struggled to reach full fitness due to a number of small injuries, which has seen him focus on coaching.
Force coach Tim Sampson told reporters that while Fourie’s retirement is disappointing, he still expects him to have an influence on the side.
‘Jaque initially had the intent to play but not long after arriving he had a couple of niggles and just made a decision to call time in his career,’ Sampson told Rugby.com.au.
‘It would’ve been great to get some game time out of him but he certainly fills in a lot at training and likes to think he’s still got it but he’s slowly beginning to be shown up by the lads.
‘He loves it, he’s a guy that gives us a lot of energy and if you look at his playing days he was a key link man for the Springboks in that position as a defence captain in the back line and the guys really respond to Jaque.
‘I think it’s been a strength this year, our defence, and hopefully Jaque can continue to put his print on our defensive systems and structures,’ Sampson added.
Fourie earned 72 caps for the Springboks between 2003 and 2015, retiring internationally after taking up club rugby in Japan.
Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images