Northampton Saints hooker Samson Ma'asi announces retirement at 21

Franklin's Gardens
Franklin's Gardens
©PA

Northampton Saints hooker Samson Ma’asi has announced his retirement from professional rugby with immediate effect.

Ma'asi, a product of the Saints Academy signed his first professional contract with the club ahead of the 2018/19 season during which he made his Premiership debut against Newcastle Falcons.

However, illness threatened his career and was forced to undergo a kidney transplant following which he returned to training in 2020 before deciding to quit the game to focus on his health.

“This was a really difficult decision for me to make, but it all came down to doing the right thing for my health,” said Ma’asi.

“I want to thank all the coaches for their support of me during my time at the Club, and particularly during the last few months as I recovered from my surgery.

“I loved my time as a Saint, and running out in front of a big Franklin’s Gardens crowd is something I will remember forever – but this is the right time for me to step away from rugby and I’m excited for what the future holds for me.”

Northampton Saints’ Head of Academy Mark Hopley expressed disappointment over the news but is happy for Ma’asi taking a different role as he focusses on his health.

“Samson is an immensely talented rugby player, and he had a very bright future ahead of him in Black, Green and Gold – but we completely understand the tough decision he has had to make to focus on his health.

“I’m thrilled we’ve been able to help him to begin a new role in teaching and coaching at St Joseph’s College, where he went to school. I’d like to offer my thanks to Anthony O’Riordan and the school for their support as Samson transitions out of professional rugby.

“The most important thing for everyone at the Club is Samson’s health and happiness, so we wish him the very best – and he’ll always be a Saint, so we’ll continue to support him however we can in future.”

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