Hugo Southwell forced to retire
February 14, 2014
Injury has forced Southwell to call it a day © PA Photos
London Wasps and Scotland back Hugo Southwell has been forced to retire due to injury.
Southwell, 33, who won 59 caps for Scotland, the last of which came against Wales in 2011 before knee injury ruled him out of that year's World Cup, was injured on Wasps duty in pre-season and has been advised by doctors to call time on his playing career. He has been an ever-present member of Wasps side since joining in 2011 and was club captain last season.
The versatile full-back has had a well-travelled career, with stints at Bristol, Worcester Warriors, Edinburgh and Stade Francais before his stint at Wasps.
"This has been a very difficult time for me and I am absolutely gutted that I have been forced to retire," Southwell said.
"It is a situation that I never thought I would find myself in and nothing quite prepares you for it. I believed I had so much more to give, which is why Terry Evans, our Physio, and I tried everything possible to get me fit after I sustained the injury in pre-season last year.
"I am extremely grateful for all his efforts along with the rest of the physio team."
"It has been an absolute honour to play at Wasps for the last three years and to be named captain last year was certainly one of the highlights of my career. I have met and made friends with a lot of great people and have played under some top coaches, most notably Dai Young, who I have great respect for. "
"He is building something special here and there are exciting times ahead I am sure. I look forward to following the progress of the team and being a regular visitor to Adams Park in the coming years."
Wasps boss Dai Young paid tribute to Southwell for his conduct during his tenure at the club, and highlighted the key role the Scot played in preserving the club's Premiership status during his time at Adams Park.
"Since arriving at the Club ahead of the 2011/12 season, Hugo has been a brilliant addition to the team, both on and off the field," Young said.
"He was a leader for us during a very rocky period and he, along with a number of other senior players, helped to save this club from relegation and set it back on the path it is on now.
"Though he will clearly be disappointed that he has been forced into retirement, he has a brilliant career behind him that most can only dream of. I speak for everyone when I say that we wish Hugo all of the best in whatever he does next."
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