South Africa's Montgomery calls it a day - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

South Africa's Montgomery calls it a day

31/08/2008 02:21:00 PM Comments (0)

Veteran South Africa fullback Percy Montgomery announced his retirement from international rugby.

Montgomery, who last October helped the Springboks to their second World Cup title in France with victory over England, called it a day just moments after his side had beaten Australia 53-8 in a Tri-Nations Test.

Montgomery, 34, earned his 100th Test cap at his former home ground, Newlands in Cape Town, just two weeks ago. In total he has played 102 Tests for the Boks and holds every South African points scoring record except tries scored.

"There have been plenty of highs and lows in my career, and it's been an honour to wear the Springbok jersey," he said after his side's victory here Saturday.

"But it is time to go. This has been coming for quite a while. With the new laws and a new era in front of us with the way rugby is played and with a new coach (Peter de Villiers), it is the right time.

"I want to thank De Villiers, Gary Gold and Dick Muir (the assistant Boks coaches) and the selectors for recalling me to the side after the World Cup last year. They gave me the opportunity to come back to South Africa and play eight more Tests and get to the 100 mark."

Andy Marinos, manager of the national rugby teams, said South Africa had been blessed to have had Montgomery play for the national team for so many years.

"His has been a remarkable achievement,' said Marinos.

"We wish him well, but we know his heart will always be in the change-room."

Montgomery will continue with his provincial career at Western province in Cape Town and has also made himself available for the Western Stormers in next season's Super 14 competition. Montgomery made his debut 11 years ago when he ran out at outside centre against the British and Irish Lions.

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