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Jauzion and Thion retire

26th June 2013 12:59

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Yannick Jauzion farewell

End of an era: Yannick Jauzion

Veteran French internationals Yannick Jauzion and Jérôme Thion have announced they are calling time on their respective careers.

Toulouse centre Jauzion won 73 Test caps for les Bleus while Biarritz lock Thion represented his country 54 times. Both played in two World Cups.

Jauzion, who will turn 35 next month, played with Toulouse for 11 years and was generally considered in his prime to be one of the finest centres in world rugby.

He won three European Cups playing for Toulouse (2003, 2005, 2010), three French national championships (2008, 2011, 2012) and two Six Nations Grand Slams with France.

Jauzion made his international debut in France's victory over South Africa in Johannesburg in June 2001. He played in two World Cup semi-finals for France - in 2003 and 2007 - but ended up on the losing side on both occasions to England.

"It's becoming harder and harder for me to continue playing at the highest level," said Jauzion.

"My club felt that it was time to move on and for them to blood younger players.

"In the end it was a good idea for me to take my leave after such a good season."

His last game for France came against Italy in the Six Nations tournament in March, 2011, but after a shock defeat in Rome he fell out of favour with then-coach Marc Lièvremont and was not selected for the World Cup in New Zealand.

Meanwhile, 35-year-old Thion will hang up his boots in the Basque country, where he won two French championships with Biarritz (2005 and 2006). He also won the Six Nations in 2006 and 2007.

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