Former South African lock Flip van der Merwe has confirmed that he will retire from the game at the end of the current season.
Van der Merwe, who is currently playing his trade with Clermont, has only managed 12 appearances this season, only starting four.
“The body helps you to say stop. You have to be honest, I can not go on. When I see guys being sheepish… I can’t catch them anymore. It’s a hard decision to make in the sense that it’s something, there is emotion,” he said.
The second-row has 35 caps for his country under his belt along with Super Rugby and Top 14 titles in a glittering career.
Unfortunately van der Merwe made the headlines last year for the wrong reasons after pushing a referee who was in the way of a ruck he wished to enter.
Although the referee took the incident light-heartedly, a disciplinary hearing awarded van der Merwe a four-week ban, while he also missed five-weeks through suspension earlier this year for a red card against Pau.
He retires ahead of his 34th birthday in June and will be sorely missed among the rugby community. However, he will have the chance to add the Challenge Cup to his cabinet when Clermont face La Rochelle in the final next weekend and is in with a chance of adding another Top 14 title too.
WATCH: Kyle Sinckler is unique. Not too many players will have received this message from the ref
‘Hey, hey, hey, keep that down’
Kyle Sinckler hasn’t been far from the headlines of late. A few key moments of ill-discipline have cost him and his team recently and have prompted a few critical comments from pundits and coaches. Warren Gatland even went as far as saying he had “Demons”.
In Quins match v Clermont, the Lions Prop was called out by the ref for another ‘Kyle Sinckler’ moment with John Lacey issuing the line “Hey, hey, hey, keep that down”
Thankfully this ‘Kyle Sinckler’ moment gave everyone more a laugh than the usual negative outcome.
Check out some of his previous ‘moments’ below.
Remember this one with Peter O’Mahony?
Or this one where he got himself at 7 week ban.
He may have a few moments of madness but on the whole, Sinckler has been described as a ‘new breed of props’ with so much potential. We’ve yet to see the best of what Sinckler has to offer. Let’s hope there’s a few more comical moments along the way.
WATCH: Top 5 European Cup Tries from Round 3
Hard to pick a winner.
European Cup Rugby Round 3 – Team of the Week
Sky Sports Team of the week contains players from across 10 teams.
Have a look at who made the cut and you can have your say on who wins ‘Try of The Round’
Sky Sports – Team of the Week:
15.Chris Ashton (Sale Sharks)
14. Cheslin Kolbe (Toulouse)
13. Will Addison (Ulster)
12. Julian Savea (Toulon)
11. Ollie Thorley (Gloucester)
10. JJ Hanrahan (Munster)
9. George Horne (Glasgow Warriors)
1. Eric O’Sullivan (Ulster)
2. Rory Best (Ulster)
3. WP Nel (Edinburgh)
4. Gerbrandt Grobler (Gloucester)
5. James Ryan (Leinster)
6. Francois Louw (Bath)
7. Chris Cloete (Munster)
8. Marcell Coetzee (Ulster)
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