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Haskell's career celebrated on Twitter

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Former team-mates pay tribute to 'real character' Haskell

After announcing his retirement from professional rugby at the end of the season, many players have taken to social media to pay tribute to James Haskell’s career.

After only managing four appearances for Northampton Saints this season due to toe and ankle injuries, the 77-cap England flanker has called time on his career which has seen him play for Wasps, Stade Francais, Ricoh Black Rams and the Highlanders, before joining the Saints at the beginning of this season.

Since making his debut for Wasps in 2002, Haskell has gone on to become one of the biggest characters in the game. This is something that has been echoed by many of his teammates, with Elliot Daly saying “no changing room will be the same again”.

What also seems apparent from many of these posts is Haskell’s professional attitude. The 34-year-old has been renowned as one of the hardest workers in English rugby, and the fact that he has only improved as his career has progressed is testament to that.

Despite making his debut for England in 2007 as a 21-year-old, he perhaps played his best rugby under Eddie Jones over the past four years, which is a by-product of his tireless attitude. This is what his former team-mates have said:

Haskell’s career has seen him play in two World Cups, the 2017 British and Irish Lions tour, as well as winning three Six Nations titles, including a Grand Slam in 2016.

He is also the only player to have played at least one game for England every year for the past 12 years, which is an indication of his longevity.

He has not necessarily always been a first choice for England, particularly as he has been branded a ‘6 ½’, as mentioned by Chris Robshaw, but as he said on Instagram: “I have spent my entire career trying to be the very best player I could be.”

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Former team-mates pay tribute to 'real character' Haskell