Hewitt forced to retire

Date published: April 27 2015

Cardiff Blues centre Dafydd Hewitt has been forced to retire from professional rugby on medical grounds because of a neck injury.

Hewitt spent nearly a decade in Cardiff, making 122 appearances for the Blues since making his debut against Edinburgh in January 2006.

He was part of the all-conquering Wales U21 Grand Slam-winning team of 2005 and captained Wales U21s in the IRB World Cup in 2006.

The Cardiff-born back was also a key member of the Wales squad that won the Rugby World Cup Sevens in Dubai in 2009.

However, Hewitt has been limited to just two appearances this season in all competitions and has now been forced to call time on his professional rugby career.

"It is hard to put into words how I am feeling at the reality of never wearing my Blues jersey again," said the 29-year-old.

"No rugby player expects to be told that they can never again play the game they love; it's the worst feeling. It was my childhood dream to play rugby for the Cardiff Blues; the team I followed as a boy and dreamt of representing. I have loved every moment of being a 'Cardiff Blue' and knew early on that it was a club I never wanted to leave.

"I'd like to thank everyone at the Blues; the coaching staff, the management, the fans, and the medical team for their invaluable support, especially during the past few months.

"I feel privileged to have played with so many great players and have forged friendships for life. I will miss everything about playing rugby and will always be a Cardiff Blue."

Richard Holland, Chief Executive at Cardiff Blues, said: "Dafydd has made a huge impact at our region over almost a decade and is a member of an exclusive club after making over a century of appearances since his debut in 2006.

"He has been an outstanding servant both on the field, including a spell as vice-captain, and off the field where he has been a true role model for young aspiring players to look to for inspiration and guidance.

"Dafydd is a hugely popular and much admired professional, from both his team-mates and our supporters, and he will be greatly missed as a player here.

"His passion for Cardiff Blues is evident to all and I know he will remain part of our region for many years to come. We wish him and his family every success for the future."