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Other SportsWales hooker Owens retires due to injury

Wales hooker Owens retires due to injury

Ken Owens, Wales’ most capped hooker, has retired due to injury at the age of 37.

Owens was capped 91 times by Wales and also played five Tests for the British and Irish Lions in a wonderful career.

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However, a long-standing back injury that has seen him sidelined for almost a year has meant he has had to call it a day.

The four-time Six Nations winner said: “Not playing has been challenging but the time is right to follow medical advice and hang up my boots.

“It might not be the dream ending but my career has been more than I could have dreamt of.

“Had I written the script there would have been one more game for Wales, for the Scarlets and ultimately Carmarthen Athletic. A chance to sign off and thank everyone involved. It was not to be.

“Whilst part of me wishes I could have done more, I am well aware that if you had told me as a kid I would be fortunate enough to experience what I have, I wouldn’t have believed you.”

Owens made his Wales debut in 2011 and went to become one of the best hookers in world rugby. He missed the 2023 World Cup through injury with his final game coming for Scarlets in the European Challenge Cup semi-final defeat to Glasgow.

“To have played 91 times for Wales is an honour I can never fully describe,” added Owens.

“To be a Lion, I am lost for words.”

Wales coach Warren Gatland said: “Ken has had an incredible rugby career and been a brilliant ambassador for the game in Wales.

“Ken is an incredibly passionate Welshman. I know it meant a lot to him to play for Wales and you could see that every single time he wore the red jersey.

“He has been a dedicated professional and a great leader, always helping drive standards but also popular with his team-mates.”

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.
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