Scottish Rugby
Hines calls time on Scotland career
ESPNscrum Staff
November 9, 2011
Scotland's Nathan Hines looks for an offload while under pressure, Scotland v Italy, Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, Scotland, August 20, 2011
Hines has collected 77 caps during his career with Scotland © Getty Images

Scottish lock Nathan Hines has announced his retirement from international rugby.

The 77-cap forward turned out for Scotland in the recent World Cup and is currently plying his trade in France with Clermont Auvergne after his summer move from Leinster. The second-row is equally adept in the back-row and took his bow for the national side back in 2000 on their tour of New Zealand. And after a career which included a tour to South Africa with the British & Irish Lions in 2009, Hines admits it was a tough decision but eventually it came down his family coming first.

"It's not a decision I've taken lightly," Hines told "Leann [his wife] and I want to have another kid and that will probably involve going through IVF again and with the Six Nations coming up then a tour next summer that would be really difficult. Our son, Josh, starts school in January and that would make it hard to travel like I've done in the past.

"It's also the end of a cycle. I played in this World Cup and I don't think I'll be around as a player come the next World Cup in 2015, especially when you consider we have perfectly capable second-rows to fill my position.

"I wanted to finish my career on my terms and didn't want to be the player that played one year too many. I will always want to play for Scotland, even when I'm 50 I'll still want to play, but I guess it's time to move on. This was the reason I was so emotional after the England game as I know how difficult it will be to give up."

Despite ending his Scottish career on a low note, Hines looks back on his time in the Scottish jersey with fondness. "There have been heaps of memorable moments, not all on the playing side either," Hines said. "You always remember your first cap and there've been good results, beating South Africa a couple of times and beating Australia. But most of the stuff you remember are things that have happened on a tour or on a bus or in a changing room."

And Scotland coach Andy Robinson has paid tribute to the Australian-born lock saying: "It has been a real pleasure to coach Nathan over the last two years. He is a one of Scotland's toughest ever competitors and a fantastic role model for all young Scottish players."

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