Geordan Murphy: Retiring full-back joining Leicester coaching staff

Geordan Murphy

Leicester Tigers captain Geordan Murphy has confirmed he will retire at the end of the season.

The former Ireland international, 35, has spent the last 16 years at Welford Road and had said that he planned to end his playing career this summer.

Full-back Murphy said it was the "right time" to quit but said he would stay with the club in a coaching role.

"Every player wants to play on forever but, unfortunately, your body just doesn't let you do that," he said.

"I have been very lucky with Leicester to win a fair amount of silverware and I am looking forward to looking back on that at some stage - it still hasn't really sunk in.

"I have a lot of good memories that I will be able to look back on with great affection. The best part of playing is the players, the mates that I have made through rugby.

"I'm very lucky that some of my best friends in life are guys that I have met through rugby and played with and played against.

"Welford Road is a very special place, it is very dear to my heart, as are the supporters.

"I have been here a long time, stayed here when I could have left, and I think the supporters and Welford Road played a huge part in the reason I am still here after 16 seasons."

Murphy, who made his Tigers debut in 1997, played in seven Premiership-winning teams and won two Heineken Cup finals.

He won 72 caps for Ireland, two Test caps for the Lions and has scored 691 points, including 93 tries, in Leicester colours.

And Murphy could yet bid farewell to Leicester with an eighth Premiership final appearance.

Tigers host Harlequins in the Premiership semi-final on Saturday.

Director of rugby Richard Cockerill said: "Geordan is an all-time great at this club. He has been a major player for us for so long and has had a massive impact on the team.

"He has played at the very top level of the game for a long time and has been one of the most outstanding players in the history of Premiership rugby."

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