Wallabies veteran Will Genia has today announced he will retire from international rugby at the end of 2019 following the Rugby World Cup in Japan.
Genia became just the tenth Australian Test centurion when he ran out against England at Twickenham last year, and only the second-ever Australian scrumhalf after George Gregan to earn the honour.
The 31-year old is set to play a key role in the Wallabies’ 2019 Rugby World Cup campaign before joining Kintetsu in Japan’s second division next season.
Wallabies scrumhalf Will Genia said: “When I had to make the decision, I felt the time was right for me. I’m very happy that I’ve made my country proud, my place of birth – Papua New Guinea proud, and my family proud.
“From a team perspective this year, we want to start building momentum leading into the World Cup and obviously that starts during the Rugby Championship. From a personal perspective, I want to just enjoy it. It seems like just yesterday I walked into Wallabies camp at aged 21 and now I’m 31.
“There’s a whole bunch of young Australian halfbacks that are very, very good – and there’s experienced ones too with Nic White back now as well. I’m really looking forward to seeing the guys come through next year, especially the two young Queensland Reds boys (Tate McDermott and Moses Sorovi).
“I say it to the Reds boys now but Suncorp Stadium is still my home. That’s the most special place I’ve played footy. If I’m fortunate enough to be playing in the Test match there against Argentina in a couple of weeks, that would be incredibly special and very emotional,” Genia said.
Genia made his Test debut 10 years ago against New Zealand in July 2009 and is line to represent Australia at three Rugby World Cups, pending selection later this year.
The scrumhalf was the 78th Wallaby to captain Australia, after skippering the side against the United States of America at the 2011 Rugby World Cup.
Genia is currently with his Wallabies teammates in South Africa ahead of their Rugby Championship opener against the Springboks on July 20.
The halfback will get the chance for a hometown farewell on Saturday July 27 when the Wallabies take on Argentina at Suncorp Stadium, in what will be his last game at the venue.