The Leicester Tigers loose forward missed much of last season after suffering an injury to his head in October, which subsequently ruled him out of the World Cup as well. But he was expected to make a return to action in the new Premiership season.
After the announcement was made, a number of his team-mates for both club and country praised his career, particularly his ball-carrying ability.
Jim Hamilton, who played alongside Denton with Scotland, said it was “a pleasure to watch you carry”, while Rory Lawson described him as a “wrecking ball”.
Denton announced himself on the international stage in 2012 as a 21-year-old with a man of the match performance against England at Murrayfield. His bruising display in that game was a precursor for what was to come for the rest of his career.
A shit way to go out @dentweezy
There is more to life than Rugby.
Was a pleasure watching you carry big fella.
Ps. I think we lost this game. pic.twitter.com/BV9hqSR06e
— Jim Hamilton (@jimhamilton4) September 16, 2019
Sad to hear that big Dave Denton @dentweezy is having to retire. Muckle lump that wasn’t too shy in chucking his body around. Congrats on your career mate. Best of luck for the next chapter. #DebraTheDentist
— Stuart W Hogg (@StuartWHOGG_) September 16, 2019
Absolutely gutted for @dentweezy ! My hair’spiration ? congrats on an amazing career, plenty of time to improve your swing now ????? no amount of filters can save us in this photo ? https://t.co/DlgfwVwIAr
Sorry to see @dentweezy being forced to retire from rugby at 29. On his day he was an absolute wrecking ball! Monster! Good luck with the next bit for you and the family.
— Rory Lawson (@rorylawson9) September 16, 2019
Sad to see @dentweezy having to hang up the boots. However, health comes first and I’m sure his lovely wife will welcome him being around little Logan a bit more. Can’t wait to have a partner in crime around Edinburgh enjoying life after rugby! pic.twitter.com/1VHOIuC3qx
He went on to earn 42 caps for Scotland and in the process played for Edinburgh, Bath, Worcester Warriors and Leicester Tigers, but he had a career that was equally hampered by injury.
During two seasons at Bath, he played barely any rugby and his fortunes did not change when he moved to Sixways the season after. He would have hoped that his move to Leicester would have allowed him to string more games together, but his time there was the shortest of the lot.
His retirement has yet again brought the topic of concussion and player welfare back into the spotlight, as it is a priority of World Rugby’s to make the game safer.
Denton is not the first player to retire from a head injury, and he has spoken in the past of the problems that he has faced. It is, therefore, no surprise that World Rugby have sought to reduce head injuries.
WATCH: The RugbyPass Lego World Cup
Sign up to our mailing list here and we’ll keep you up to the minute with weekly updates from the world of rugby.