Aviva Premiership
Rory Lawson forced to retire
ESPN Staff
August 7, 2013
Scotland captain Rory Lawson carries the ball against Georgia, Scotland v Georgia, Rugby World Cup, Rugby Park Stadium, Invercargill, New Zealand, September 14, 2011
Rory Lawson appeared at two Rugby World Cups during a six-year international career © Getty Images

Newcastle Falcons and Scotland scrum-half Rory Lawson has announced his retirement from professional rugby with immediate effect due to a career-ending wrist injury.

Lawson won the last of his 31 Test caps against Tonga and also captained his country on five occasions. The 32-year-old played an integral part in Newcastle's successful Championship campaign last season having previously enjoyed stints at Gloucester and Edinburgh.

He said: "I am absolutely devastated that an injury has forced me to retire from the game that has been my life for the past decade. However I feel hugely privileged to have been able to enjoy such a long and successful career doing something that I love.

"While I wish I could continue playing for a few more years, I have to accept what the surgeon has told me and that it isn't possible to play at this level any more. I consider myself so lucky to have been able to captain my country, play in two World Cups and be part of some amazingly talented squads, most recently at Newcastle Falcons and previously at Gloucester and Edinburgh."

The grandson of legendary commentator Bill McLaren, Lawson hinted he may opt for a new career in the media. "I'm not entirely sure what the future holds at this stage but there are a few opportunities to explore," he said. "One ambition has always been to try my hand at broadcasting. Whilst there is no way I would ever attempt to match 'the great man' in the commentary stakes, hopefully I've inherited at least a couple of my Papa's genes, so you never know! I will continue to fundraise for the Bill McLaren Foundation whilst assessing next steps."

RPA Rugby Director David Barnes paid tribute to Lawson while airing his concern at the alarming amount of enforced retirements in recent weeks. "Rory is a world class player who will be extremely hard to replace," he said. "As well as being an incredibly skilful scrum-half he is also a hugely popular character within the game and I hope that he will be able to stay involved in rugby in some shape or form going forwards.

"As for the bigger picture, it is a grave concern to us as an organisation that Rory becomes the 7th player to be forced to retire this season before the Aviva Premiership season has even got underway. Following on from 22 forced retirements last season, the highest number recorded, the RPA will be working with the players, Premiership Rugby and the RFU to ensure that player welfare is the key focus for the game."

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