The rugby community has been paying tribute to Brad Barritt today after the Saracens captain confirmed he will be leaving the club at the end of the season. Barritt has signed a contract extension to see out the disrupted 2019/20 campaign with Saracens, but confirmed it will be his last at Allianz Park.

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Barritt, who joined Saracens in 2008 and became captain in 2016, is one of the most decorated players in the club’s history, winning five Premiership titles and three Champions Cups while making 257 appearances for Sarries.

South Africa-born Barritt also won 26 caps for England between 2012 and 2015 and was selected for the 2013 British and Irish Lions tour of Australia.

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Saracens will be relegated from the Premiership at the end of the season following their breach of salary cap rules, but still have a European Champions Cup quarter-final against Leinster – who they beat in last year’s final – to look forward to.

“I’m excited and delighted to announce that I’ve signed a contract extension until the end of the 2019/20 season,” Barritt said.

“But I’m also sadly going to announce that this will be my last season with Saracens. I have had an incredible stay here of 12 years.”

Barritt has not outlined his plans for life after Saracens, but news of his decision to leave the club led to a flood of tributes on Twitter.

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“Congrats on a great career mate! Huge respect for how you play the game & what you’ve achieved,” wrote Harlequins’ Mike Brown.

“Some shift pal, enjoyed the battles,” said Jamie Roberts.

“Hell of a run Brad!! Good luck this year and life after rugby!!” added Jamie Cudmore.

Referee Nigel Owens described Barritt as “A credit to the game of rugby on and off the field.”

Former Saracens and Bath prob David Flatman wrote “Legend. Nails.”

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