World Cup winner Vicky Fleetwood retires immediately
Former England and Saracens flanker Vicky Fleetwood has announced her immediate retirement from rugby.
The 2014 World Cup winner has been out of action since October having undergone surgery for a knee injury, conceding that it is not “the fairytale ending that everyone dreams of.”
The 82-cap international made her debut for England in 2011, and has gone on to win five Six Nations titles, including four Grand Slams, alongside the World Cup and a bronze medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in sevens.
After her retirement was announced, Fleetwood said: “My rugby career has been an incredible journey and has given me memories that will last forever. Being part of the Red Roses is something special and I’m proud that I got to wear the white shirt on so many occasions.
Despite this being the end of her playing career, Fleetwood has said that she will remain involved in the game through coaching.
“Rugby has given me so much to be thankful for, and I’ve met some amazing people along the way.
“Although it’s time to step away from playing, I will continue to stay in the game through my coaching; something which I’m very passionate about.”
She wrote on Instagram: “It’s time. To hang up the boots and walk away from what was once a dream, but became a reality.? 12 years, 82 caps and plenty of injuries later I can proudly say I put everything into playing for both my club and country.
“The blood, the sweat, the tears, the change of position.. from 15s to 7s and back again!?? It may not be the fairytale ending that everyone dreams of, but when you’re not getting out of it what you put in, the sacrifices become harder to make and the enjoyment lessens.
“Rugby has given me so much to be thankful for and will forever hold a place in my heart. I’m staying in the game coaching, however my time playing is done, and the memories and friendships will last a lifetime! ??Now onto the next chapter…”
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