Wales and Lions legend Leigh Halfpenny retires from international rugby

Wales and Lions legend Leigh Halfpenny retires from international rugby

Leigh Halfpenny has retired from international rugby.

One of the most recognisable names in European rugby, Leigh Halfpenny, has decided to hang up his international boots.

Halfpenny, who won his his first of 101 test caps back in 2008, was an ever-present for Wales as they won two Grand Slams, four Six Nations titles and reached two World Cup semi-finals during a golden era for rugby in the country.

He also went on three Lions Tours – his first in 2009 and then again in 2013 and 2017. He even won Player of the Series in 2013 for his exceptional performances against Australia, as his playmaking and elite goalkicking steered Warren Gatland’s team to victory.

He scored a total of 114 points on that tour as he was elected as the team’s primary kicker over the likes of Johnny Sexton and Owen Farrell.

Halfpenny retirement statement.

“After having time to reflect after the Rugby World Cup campaign, it’s with a heavy heart that I’ve decided that it’s time for me to step away from international rugby,” wrote Halfpenny on social media on Wednesday morning.

“The decision hasn’t been easy, but the time feels right for now and I look forward to running out one last time next week at home.

“It’s been such a huge honour and privilege to put on the Welsh jersey and represent my country over the past 15 years.”

Club future.

The 34-year-old did, however, underline his intention to continue playing professional club rugby.

He is currently without a club after leaving Scarlets at the end of last season. He spent six seasons at Parc y Scarlets after joining them from French giants Toulon in 2017.

“Whilst I’ll be moving on from the international game, I’m excited about the next chapter as a player in this game which has given me so much, and look forward to sharing details on my club future soon.”

Whoever lands his signature will be getting a player of immense pedigree.