Former Scotland captain Stuart Hogg is retiring from rugby “with great sadness” at the age of 31.
The full-back had intended to stop playing after this year’s World Cup.
Hogg, who joined Exeter Chiefs from Glasgow Warriors in 2019, won 100 Scotland caps and toured three times with the British and Irish Lions.
“I fought with everything I had to make the Rugby World Cup, but this time my body has not been able to do the things I wanted and needed it to do,” he said.
“It is difficult where to start, but with great sadness and an enormous amount of pride, I am announcing my immediate retirement from playing rugby. We knew this day would come eventually – I just never thought it would be this soon.
“It’s hard to put into words just how much of an impact the game has had on my life. I will be retiring knowing that I have given my body and heart to rugby. I will be forever grateful to this amazing community and cannot wait to begin my journey as a proud supporter of the team.”
Hogg won the Pro12 with Warriors in 2015 and a Premiership and European Champions Cup double with the Chiefs in 2020.
He featured at the past two World Cups and was with the Lions for their Australia 2013, New Zealand 2017 and South Africa 2021 tours. All 171 of his Test points came in a Scotland jersey.
“He has been an outstanding player for Scotland and has had a career lit up with so many achievements, highlights and special memories,” Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend said.
“I have had the pleasure of coaching Stuart for the majority of his career and he was a joy to work with and watch on the training field and in games. His basic skills and speed set him apart from other players and it has been an amazing effort to play Test rugby for the past 11 years.
“To reach 100 caps this year was fitting and just reward for a career that has seen him represent the British and Irish Lions and win trophies both domestically and at a European level.
“We respect his decision to step away now and understand the stresses and challenges his body has gone through in recent seasons.”
‘One of Scotland’s greatest ever players’
BBC Scotland’s Tom English
Not a massive surprise. When he announced in March that he was intending to retire after the World Cup, that was a huge surprise – nobody saw that coming. But recently over the last number of weeks, there’s been a little bit of chat. Scotland had a World Cup warm-up camp in France and Hogg wasn’t there.
He clearly knows that the game is up, that his body isn’t up to it anymore. It’s a ferociously tough decision for him to make but he’s making the right decision for him but also for the squad.
The way he played rugby, it took its toll. If Stuart Hogg thought he was fit enough to go to the World Cup, he would’ve gone there. It meant everything to him to play for this country and captain his country. He captained his country with distinction. He had big days in that jersey.
Unquestionably one of Scotland’s greatest ever players. Without doubt Scotland’s first superstar of the professional era. The burden was on him. He carried that with him very, very lightly. The pace of the guy, the electricity he generated when he got on the ball and the respect he got from opposing teams – Hogg gave them plenty to worry about.