Newcastle Falcons have confirmed that centre Tane Tu'ipulotu has been forced to retire from professional rugby with immediate effect.
The 32-year-old Tongan has been advised by medical experts to retire due to a knee injury.
Tu'ipulotu first joined Newcastle 2008 from Super 15 side The Hurricanes and went on to make 83 appearances for the club. He moved to Japanese outfit Jubilo at the end of the 2010-11 campaign.
Following a year in the land of the rising sun, the Pacific Islander made a welcome return to Newcastle to help Dean Richards' men secure promotion back to the Aviva Premiership at the first time of asking.
"It's a painfully tough decision for me to make to stop doing something that I've always loved since a young lad growing up in Tonga," Tu'ipulotu to the clubs official website.
"I would like to take this opportunity to thank the coaches, staff and fans for supporting me throughout my career, and to all my fellow teammates both past and present.
"It's been an honour to share my playing experience with them all."
"I'm disappointed and it's a big blow to the team to lose someone of Tane's calibre," said Falcons director of rugby Dean Richards.
"Players of Tane's quality don't come around very often, and it's a massive loss to the side.
"We wish him all the very best for the future."