Ben Franks: Northampton Saints and former New Zealand prop to retire

Ben Franks (right) holding the Rugby World Cup trophy with brother Owen
Ben Franks (right) won the 2015 World Cup with New Zealand, alongside brother Owen

Two-time World Cup winner Ben Franks is to retire from professional rugby at the end of the 2019-20 season.

The Northampton front row, 35, won 47 caps for New Zealand, helping the All Blacks lift consecutive World Cups in 2011 and 2015 alongside brother Owen.

Franks won two Super Rugby titles with Crusaders and has since played in England for London Irish and Saints.

"The end of this season is the right time for me call time on my career," he told the Northampton website.

"I've loved my journey in rugby; from playing back home in New Zealand, to representing the All Blacks alongside my brother, and then coming over here to experience the challenge of the English Premiership."

Franks is one of 21 players to have lifted the World Cup on two occasions.

He has made 37 Northampton appearances since signing in 2018 and says his younger brother will "continue to play on" for the club, having himself arrived at Franklin's Gardens last summer.

Saints director of rugby Chris Boyd said: "Ben's had an incredible professional career that has spanned over 15 years, and amongst all the players I've ever coached, he is right up there amongst the most professional of them all."

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