Croft to hang up his boots


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QR Reds flanker David Croft has announced his decision to retire from professional rugby at the end of the 2008 season.

Croft, who has played 114 matches for Queensland and 92 consecutive Super Rugby games since 2001, still has one year left to run on his contract.

However he said with a good crop of dedicated and talented young players coming through at the Reds and excellent coaching staff in charge, now was the right time to leave.

‘I would be doing Queensland Rugby, my teammates and myself a disservice by playing on if my heart’s not in it. For me, it’s either all or nothing,’ Croft said.

‘I believe it’s much better making that decision now and giving the Reds time before next season, to free up funds to recruit new players.

‘Money is not my motivation for playing. I’m 29, I’ve completely devoted myself to playing professional Rugby for more than 10 seasons. I just want to do something different,’ Croft said.

Croft revealed he had started thinking about his future more than a year ago but put any thought of retirement on hold after the Reds’ dismal 2007 season.

‘I didn’t want to leave the Reds in that position and I still believed that I could help their cause. It’s not in my nature to leave a sinking ship. I wanted to get to the point where I could see light at the end of the tunnel and I think that we are there now,’ he said.

‘The team means everything to me. Their well being has always been my focus. Fronting them last night and informing them of my decision was possibly the toughest thing I’ve had to do.’

Croft, who earned five Wallaby caps after making his Test debut against Argentina in 2002, said he would end his professional career with no regrets.

‘I’d like to thank my team mates, the Reds ARU, my family, friends and most importantly, the supporters, for all the faith and dedication they have shown over the years.

‘I have been given the privilege of representing my state in over 110 games and my country at the highest level and I am happy to leave with no regrets.’

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