Legendary former All Blacks centre Conrad Smith is to retire at the end of the season.
Blessed with a fantastic rugby brain, great distribution skills, and the ability to run fantastic angles allied to his cleverness in defence, Smith will go down in history as one of New Zealand’s greatest ever players.
The former All Blacks, Hurricanes and Wellington centre who has been plying his trade with Pau in the Top 14 since 2015 is looking to do some more work with the International Rugby Players association as well as some coaching following his retirement.
During a superb eleven-year test career, the 36-year-old made 94 appearances for the men in black, winning back-to-back World Cups in 2011 and 2015, as well as five Tri-Nations titles and three Rugby Championship crowns.
While domestically he made 126 appearances for the Hurricanesm becoming their joint-most capped player alongside Ma’a Nonu, he was also named the 2012 Steinlager Investec Super Rugby Player of the Year.
He has impressed for Pau since moving to the South-West of France, making 17 appearances for the Stade Du Hameau outfit this season, with the former Pro D2 champions currently lying in seventh place.
Announcing his decision to hang up his boots at the end of the season, the Hawera-born midfielder also spoke about his desire to stay involved in pro rugby through the administrative side of the game as well as through coaching.
“I’m going to finish up this year and I think I will spend a year or two either doing a bit of work with International Rugby Players, but also within rugby itself and the coaching set-up and see what I like.
“While I was playing, it was cool that I could do it (working with the players’ associations) and it was something a little bit different outside of the rucks and the tactics of the game”.
“It’s certainly something that has interested me for a while. It stems from the fact that I just love rugby”.
Rugby fans all over the world will be wishing the classy New Zealander a happy retirement.
Read More About: 2011 rugby world cup, 2015 rugby world cup, All Blacks, conrad smith, Hurricanes Rugby, International Rugby Players Association, ma'a nonu, pau rugby, super rugby, the rugby championship, Top 14, Tri Nations rugby