Darren Lockyer happy to bow out with Four Nations win
Australia captain Darren Lockyer said his side was given a stern test in Saturday's Four Nations final against England as he bowed out of the sport with a try in his last game.
The 34-year-old guided his side to a 30-8 win against England as they showed their experience as the game went on.
"England really tested us but the resolve we showed as a group was what was most pleasing," said Lockyer.
"Tonight was about holding our nerve in the tough periods."
The Brisbane and Queensland star, who was winning his 59th Kangaroos cap and playing the 471st game of his career, gathered a rebound off the post from his own kick to score late in the game to follow efforts from Sam Thaiday, Jharal Yow Yeh, Johnathan Thurston and Greg Inglis.
He was allowed the chance to convert his own try, but sliced horribly wide to much amusement.
After earning the praise of the appreciative Elland Road crowd, Lockyer was given a round of applause by journalists after the post-match press conference.
"I have had a great time and been fortunate to play at this level for a long time," he said.
"You can't go on for ever and I think now is as good a time as any for me. It is time for me to move on and allow the next crop to come through.
"For me personally, I am just thinking it is a good night. We have been together five weeks and it is nice to finish like that."
Australia coach Tim Sheens paid tribute to the efforts of his squad over the whole tournament.
"It was a determined effort from the group. We have been a really tight group and worked hard from the start," he said
"There has been a lot of talk about England and how well they were prepared but I can tell you we worked very hard.
"They showed up for each other tonight and I was real happy with the way they defended.
"It was a great game of footy. The crowd got their money's worth and rugby league in this country will take some credit from that.
"That's two finals in a row England have made at home and it took us until the 60th minute before we could really breathe a sigh of relief.
"If a couple of bounces had gone their way it could have been closer."