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Justin Tipuric: Wales flanker announces retirement from international rugby months before World Cup

Justin Tipuric retires from international rugby with immediate effect; 33-year-old won 93 caps for Wales and captained his country during last year's Autumn internationals; Flanker had been named in 54-player training squad by Warren Gatland earlier in May

Justin Tipuric has retired from international rugby just four months out form the Rugby World Cup
Image: Justin Tipuric has retired from international rugby just four months out from the Rugby World Cup

Wales flanker Justin Tipuric has announced his retirement from international rugby, four months before the Rugby World Cup begins in France.

Tipuric, capped 93 times by his country, had been named in an extended 54-player training squad for the Rugby World Cup by Wales head coach Warren Gatland earlier this month.

The 33-year-old captained Wales during last year's Autumn internationals but announced his shock retirement on Friday.

"During the off-season I've had time to reflect on my playing career and now seems the right time to step away from international rugby," Tipuric said in a statement.

"It's been a privilege to put on the Welsh jersey and have so many great memories.

"I'd like to thank all the players and coaches that I've been fortunate enough to work with over the years and the wonderful support I've received from the Welsh public.

"I'm looking forward to spending more time at home and putting all my energies into playing for my home region the Ospreys."

Tipuric made his Wales debut in 2011 and helped them win the Six Nations in 2012, 2013, 2019 and 2021. He was also part of the Wales squads that reached the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals in 2015 and semi-finals in 2019.

He was part of three British & Irish Lions' tours, winning one cap.

Tipuric's region Ospreys said in a statement: "In a decision that will be sorely felt by Welsh rugby, Justin Tipuric announced his retirement from the international stage [on Friday] after winning 93 caps for his country.

"The Trebanos RFC product has been a mainstay in the Welsh squad since his international debut back in 2011. Known for his incredible work rate, agility, and rugby IQ, Tipuric has been an integral part of the Welsh national team for over a decade. He has contributed significantly to Welsh rugby's recent successes, helping the team win four Six Nations tournaments, including two Grand Slams.

"Having made his debut against Argentina back in 2011, Tipuric has been a mainstay of Welsh rugby for over a decade. In that time, he has become known as one of the finest open-side flankers in the game. His work-rate and ability to steal the ball at the breakdown have made him a vital component of the Welsh team."

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