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SPORTS | 03-04-2018 17:09

Juan Martín Hernández retires from professional rugby

Widely regarded as Argentina's greatest-ever player, rugby legend announces his retirement in a French press interview.

Juan Martín Hernández, widely regarded as Argentina's greatest-ever player, announced his retirement from professional rugby in a French press interview published today.

The 35-year-old, known as El Mago ("The Magician"), suffered a knee injury last month that convinced him the time had come to hang up his boots.

"The cruciate ligaments aren't affected but it's very painful and the demands of Super Rugby don't allow me to play in this competition diminished," the Jaguares player told Midi Olympique.

"So I've decided to stop playing rugby. There you go, it's finished.

"I didn't want to have any regrets, I think I wanted the end to come on a rugby field," added Hernández, in his prime considered one of the best fly-halves in the world.

He also excelled at centre and full-back, although he always preferred wearing the No.10 jersey.

Hernández played 74 times in Argentina's light-blue-and-white jersey and helped the national team reach the World Cup semi-finals in 2007 and 2015.

He played much of his club career in France, winning the Top 14 title twice with Parisians Stade Francais.

He spent one season in South Africa with Sharks before also playing for Racing 92 and Toulon, joining Buenos Aires-based Jaguares in 2016.

Asked about a future in coaching, Hernández said: "We'll see!

"First of all I'll take six months off for me and my children.

"I'm going to be a normal father, taking the little ones to school in the morning and collecting them in the evening."

- TIMES/AFP

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