Justin Tipuric: Wales flanker makes shock retirement call before the Rugby World Cup

Jared Wright
Flanker Justin Tipuric has retired from international rugby just four months before Wales kick off their Rugby World Cup campaign.

Wales and Ospreys flanker Justin Tipuric has announced his retirement from international rugby with immediate effect, ruling himself out of Rugby World Cup selection.

Less than four months before Wales’ opening World Cup match against Fiji in Bordeaux, Tipuric has called Test time on his career.

Stepping away

The Ospreys forward has been capped 93 times by Wales and was recently named in a 54-player preliminary training squad for the tournament by head coach Warren Gatland.

He is a three-time British and Irish Lions tourist and has also captained his country since making his Test debut in 2011.

The 33-year-old says he made the decision in order to spend more time at home and focus his energy on performances for Ospreys.

“During the off-season, I’ve had time to reflect on my playing career, and now seems the right time to step away from international rugby,” Tipuric said in a statement confirming his decision.

“It’s been a privilege to put on the Welsh jersey and have so many great memories.

“I’d like to thank all the players and coaches that I’ve been fortunate enough to work with over the years and the wonderful support I’ve received from the Welsh public.

“I’m looking forward to spending more time at home and putting all my energies into playing for my home region, the Ospreys.”

Tipuric’s stats

He made his Test debut for Wales against Argentina in 2011 and has been a mainstay in the international team since.

Renowned for his incredible work-rate and ability to win turnovers, Tipuric was crucial in the sides that won four Six Nations titles, including two Grand Slams.

He also represented Wales at the 2015 and 2019 Rugby World Cups.

According to Opta Stats, Tipuric made 491 tackles in the competition, the fifth most of any player, while only two players bettered his success rate (97.4 min. 100 attempts) since 2000.

Tipuric’s decision comes just a month after his fellow Wales back-row forward Josh Navidi called time on his career, being forced into retirement because of a serious neck problem.

Wales have not indicated if a replacement will be called into the training squad.

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