Stuart lauds Phillips' courage and honesty - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Stuart lauds Phillips' courage and honesty

By Brent Read 21/04/2003 06:41:21 PM Comments (0)

Coach Ricky Stuart has lauded Luke Phillips for his courage and honesty after the Sydney Roosters' grand final hero announced his shock retirement from rugby league.

Phillips, who has been sidelined since last year's grand final with a shoulder injury, fronted his teammates at Roosters training and told them he had played his last game in the NRL.

The entire squad gave Phillips a spontaneous round of applause before the 27-year-old said his goodbyes.

Phillips conceded he was fighting a losing battle in his bid to return from a serious shoulder injury, which he courageously carried into last year's grand final.

"I think it's the best time now," Phillips said.

"I said to the boys after the bad injury I have got, I'm still a long way off playing.

"I would rather be honest to them and the club and tell them the motivation is not there for the long haul back.

"I'd rather leave on a good note than come back through reserve grade in six months time and not be playing well.

"The motivation is not there."

Phillips' decision was made easier by the form of Anthony Minichiello, who has made the No.1 jersey his own since taking over for the injured incumbent in the pre-season.

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