Ireland international Dan Leavy announces retirement

Dan Leavy has played 79 times for Leinster and 11 Tests for Ireland
Dan Leavy has played 79 times for Leinster and 11 Tests for Ireland

Ireland and Leinster flanker Dan Leavy has announced his retirement from professional rugby with immediate effect.

The decision follows after he has not been able to recover completely from a knee injury that he sustained while playing for Leinster against Ulster in March 2019.

“I have done everything I can to come back from the knee injury I suffered in 2019 but unfortunately I can’t do any more or ask any more of my body," he told Leinster's official website.

“I’d like to thank Andy Williams, my surgeon, and Karl Denvir, my physio in Leinster, for all that they have done for me in the years since then. I can take solace from the fact that I tried everything over the last three years.

“From the early days in Old Belvedere to my time in St Michael’s College, all I wanted was to pull on a Leinster Rugby jersey. And then when you achieve that, it’s an Ireland jersey."

The 27-year-old was awarded a senior contract with Leinster after successfully graduating from their Academy and went on to play for them 79 times.

His international debut for Ireland came in 2016 and has gone on to play 11 Tests for the national side since then. He made his Six Nations debut after coming off the bench against England in the Aviva Stadium in March 2017 and was part of the Grand Slam winning side in 2018.

“I am very proud of all that I achieved in my short time as a professional," he added.

“Some amazing highs with my brothers in blue and in green and I am beyond grateful for those days and those moments especially the highs of 2018 in Bilbao, the Aviva Stadium and Twickenham.

“More than that I am proud of how I carried myself, in particular over the last few years, and I hope I represented my club, my country, my family and friends to the best of my abilities in those years. I am beyond grateful to them all for their support and in particular to my mum and dad, Eilish and Donal, my sister, Rachel, and my brother, Adam.

“I am also very grateful to Leo Cullen. Leo has been an unbelievable support to me over the last few years. On the field, and off, and I cannot thank him enough.

“Not many people get to enjoy and experience what I have over the last 10 years representing my school, my club and my country.

“This is not the end I had hoped for, but as I look back, at the highs and the lows, they have all been shared with the best teammates, family and friends around me, and what more could I ask for?”