Leigh Halfpenny: Wales full-back to retire from international rugby

Leigh Halfpenny (101 caps, 801 points) is seventh all-time for the Wales men’s caps and third among their all-time points scorers; he also made four Test appearances for the British & Irish Lions during the 2013 and 2017 tours, and was named player of the series in 2013 when he defeated Australia

Last updated: 10/25/23 11:27 am

Wales’ Leigh Halfpenny is retiring from international rugby

Leigh Halfpenny has announced his retirement from international rugby following Wales’ match against the Barbarians at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff on November 4.

Halfpenny (101 caps) leaves as one of a select number of Wales men’s players to reach a century of caps and is seventh on the all-time list. He also made four Test appearances for the British & Irish Lions during the 2013 and 2017 tours, and was named player of the series in 2013 when he defeated Australia.

In an international career spanning 15 years, Halfpenny is third on the all-time list of men’s points scorers for Wales with 801, behind Neil Jenkins (1,049) and Stephen Jones (917). last appearance in a red jersey against the Barbarians.

Announcing the decision on social media, Halfpenny said: “Having had time to reflect on the Rugby World Cup campaign, it is with a heavy heart that I have decided that it is time to step away from international rugby .

“The decision wasn’t an easy one, but the time feels right for me now and I’m looking forward to playing against the Barbarians one last time at home next week.

“It has been a huge honor and privilege to wear the Wales jersey and represent my country for the last fifteen years. As a child growing up for Gorseinon it was a dream to one day play for Wales and I have made the best of it.” incredible memories.

“There have been ups and downs but I will look back on my international career with immense pride. There is no better feeling than running out to a packed Principality Stadium wearing the Welsh jersey and singing the national anthem. I am going to miss it, but I will forever be grateful for the opportunities I have had and for everyone who has helped me along the way.

“It has been incredible to play with such special people over the years and I will cherish the friendships I have made. I am excited about this group of players coming to Wales and what they can achieve in the future. I am looking looking forward to supporting the boys from the stands.

“Although I am leaving the international game behind, I am excited about the next chapter as a player in this game that has given me so much and I look forward to sharing details about the future of my club soon. Diolch.”

Wales senior men’s head coach Warren Gatland said: “Leigh has had a fantastic career for Wales, first on the wing and then at the age of 15 where he was brilliant – probably the best defensive full-back in the world and a great goalscorer.

“He’s had quite a few injury problems over the years, but he’s never let that hold him back.

“When you talk about role models in professional rugby, I don’t think you can find anyone who works harder than Leigh when it comes to the way he prepares. The analysis, training and recovery he has done time and time again, was really impressive. he is the ultimate professional.”