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Neck Injury Forces Worsley to Retire

Wasps and England forward brings curtain down on career

Posted Nov 17, 2011 by Chris White

Joe Worsley made more than 300 appearances for Wasps

London Wasps and England forward Joe Worsley has been forced to retire at the age of 34 due to a neck injury. The flanker played over 300 times for his club side and won 78 England caps and a World Cup winners’ medal and subsequent MBE in 2003.

Worsley made the announcement this week, stating that “re-starting contact work during the England World Cup camp made it obvious that I could not continue. I injured my neck last season and it just hasn’t been right since.”

Having made his Test debut in the 1999 World Cup, Worsley went on to become a vital part of the victorious squad in 2003, and was a replacement in the 2007 final.

England coach Martin Johnson, who played alongside Worsley, paid tribute, saying “it’s sad that he’s had to retire because of injury as I’m sure there was plenty of rugby left in him. He was a great team-mate and always gave 100% for England and Wasps. On behalf of the England squad I’d like to wish him well and hope he is just as successful after rugby.”

Steve Hayes, the owner of Wasps, went as far as saying “Joe is a real legend at this club and we are all very sad to see his playing days come to an end. He’s been a fantastic servant to Wasps and played a huge part in the club’s success.”

Worsley won the Heineken Cup twice with Wasps, as well as the Premiership title four times and three Powergen Cup titles.

What is the one moment of Joe Worsley’s career that stands out in your mind? Share your memories here, on Twitter @ImagineRugby and on Facebook by clicking here.

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