Recurring shoulder injury forces Bulls winger Travis Ismaiel into retirement

Travis Ismaiel played a solitary Test for South Africa in 2018
Travis Ismaiel played a solitary Test for South Africa in 2018

South Africa international Travis Ismaiel has announced his retirement from professional rugby with immediate effect.

According to Afrikaans newspaper, the Rapport, Ismaiel took advice from medical professionals following an injury that he sustained in November last year and has decided to quit his playing career. He is now looking to finish his studies in software development field in Cape Town.

The 29-year-old started his professional rugby career with provincial side Blue Bulls in 2012 with his Super Rugby debut for Bulls coming in 2014. He made a switch to Harlequins during the 2019/20 season before returning back to Bulls in 2020.

Having represented South Africa Under 20 and South Africa A sides previously, Ismaiel also made a solitary Test appearance for the Springboks that came in June 2018 against Wales.

“I injured myself in November last year and when I returned to the field in a club match I hurt my shoulder again.

“The doctor told me he could not fix it.

“It was a very difficult decision to leave rugby. I had sleepless nights, but in the end, the risks are just too great.

“I had to think about the consequences if I were to play again.”