'Fards strained every last fibre' - Veteran Leinster forward Scott Fardy to retire

Leinster head coach Leo Cullen paid tribute to the Australian's contribution
'Fards strained every last fibre' - Veteran Leinster forward Scott Fardy to retire

1 April 2021; Scott Fardy arrives for the Leinster Rugby captains run at the RDS Arena in Dublin. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Leinster forward Scott Fardy will retire from rugby at the end of this season.

The 39-times capped Australian international, who turns 37 in July, starred for Leinster in the Heineken Champions Cup quarter-final win against Exeter last weekend.

But after four years with the province, he has decided now is the time to step away from the game. Fardy has already lifted the Guinness PRO14 this season, accepting the trophy with Devin Toner and Michael Bent.

The veteran told leinsterrugby.ie: "I’ve loved every minute of this adventure, not only the last few years with Leinster but all of it and of course there is still a lot of rugby to be played this season. We are still on a high after the weekend and we’ve a massive few weeks ahead and that is our focus right now.

"We’ve a week off at the moment and then we’ll begin our build up with a game against Munster Rugby and then the massive challenge of facing La Rochelle away in France.

"There will be time to sit back, reflect and to thank the clubs and the people that have played a part in my playing career when the season is done and maybe even in person.

"It’s been a hard year for everyone in society and playing without our fans has been difficult but hopefully off the back of Monday’s news, I might be able to say thank you and goodbye at the RDS in front of our supporters which would be special.

"Until then all my energy and focus is on finishing the season strongly with Leinster."

Fardy was referring to Leinster's announcement this week of plans to host a match next month to test a pilot scheme for rapid antigen testing of supporters to detect Covid-19.

Leinster Head Coach Leo Cullen added: "Scott Fardy leaves a formidable legacy behind him at the club. He has been a key figure in the team’s recent success and has been an invaluable member of the leadership group during his time here.

"Fards is a great competitor on the field but he also brings great enjoyment and fun to the entire squad throughout our lengthy season when the team is constantly changing, particularly with international players away and younger players stepping up in their absence.

"I’m sure lots of Leinster supporters will remember his performance in Bilbao when he was still straining every last fibre deep into injury time to try to block down the late Remi Tales drop-goal attempt. But there have been so many other moments where he has shown a real physical edge and winning mentality across a brilliant four years.

"We wish Scott, Penelope and their two boys, August and Walker, all the very best with their return home safe in the knowledge that they have friends here for life at Leinster.

"We very much hope to see them back at sometime in the future at a packed RDS Arena so that the Leinster faithful can show their appreciation and give them a proper blue wave good-bye."

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