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Former All Black captain Kieran Read calls time on pro career following semi-final bow-out

By Online Editors

Trending on RugbyPass

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Former All Blacks captain Kieran Read has officially retired from the game following Toyota Verblitz’s semifinal loss to Panasonic Wild Knights on Saturday.


The 35-year-old confirmed ahead of the match that this would be his final season in Japan and his final season playing top-flight rugby. Following Saturday’s 48-21 defeat, Read will now return to New Zealand and is looking forward to spending time with is family.

Read played 128 matches for the All Blacks, including 52 as captain, and was a member of the 2011 and 2015 World Cup-winning sides.

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The dynamic loose forward set a new standard for No 8s around the world with his strong carrying game, excellent work in the wider channels and dependable lineout presence.

Read debuted for Canterbury in 2006 and the Crusaders a year later before earning his first All Blacks cap in 2008.

It didn’t take long for the North Island native to cement himself as one of Canterbury’s favourite sons, accumulating 38 appearances for the province as well as 156 for the Crusaders.

Read relocated to his province of birth, Counties Manukau, for the Mitre 10 Cup in 2017 but didn’t make any competition appearances for the Steelers until last year, when he returned to NZ following the cancellation of the Top League.


Read was anointed World Rugby’s Player of the Year in 2013 and won four Super Rugby titles with the Crusaders, playing his last match for the franchise in 2019.

The official Twitter accounts of the All Blacks, Wallabies and World Rugby all acknowledged Read’s retirement from the game and congratulate the loose forward for his lengthy career.



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Former All Black captain Kieran Read calls time on pro career following semi-final bow-out