Lyon duo Bonnaire, Privat to retire

Date published: April 14 2017

Lyon veterans Julien Bonnaire and Thibault Privat will both retire at the end of the current Top 14 season.

The duo, both 38, have enjoyed impressively long careers in the French top flight, with both players also representing France in the past.

Back-row Bonnaire, who won 75 caps, and second-row Privat, nine caps, enjoyed the best years of their careers with Clermont, and both admitted the game had changed dramatically since they started out in 2001 (Bonnaire) and 1998 respectively.

Speaking to Rugbyrama, Bonnaire said: "We lived through the transition and today, it is more business, we are more pawns than players because mentalities change and above all we want the show.

"It's harder, it goes faster, it's not the same sport because the pressure is more important."

Looking back to the Top 14 title won by Clermont in 2010, in which boths players were involved, Bonnaire added: "The title with Clermont which will remain engraved at Never because it had never been done, it was fabulous."

Bonnaire started his career with Bourgoin back in 2001, before moving to Clermont in 2007 until 2015 when he joined Lyon. He was a two-time Grand Slam winner with France, winning four championships overall.

Privat played for Nîmes, Béziers, Clermont, Montpellier and Lyon, and was part of France's Grand Slam-winning side in 2002.

Photo credit: LOU Rugby/Marc Galaor

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