Blake Green has announced his immediate retirement from rugby league following a stellar 14-year career.
The 34-year-old half-back made 270 appearances for Parramatta Eels, Cronulla Sharks, Canterbury Bulldogs, Hull KR, Wigan, Melbourne Storm, Manly Sea Eagles, New Zealand Warriors and Newcastle Knights, scoring 56 tries.
Green said: “I can still see everything clearly on the field and know where I need to be, but unfortunately my body stopped getting there.
“I’m always honest with myself, my team-mates and our staff. It hurt, but once I knew retirement was the right call I owed it to everyone to do it as quickly as possible for the betterment of our football club.”
Green has reflected on the 2013 season as one of the proudest moments during his playing career, where he won the double with Wigan and also picked up the Harry Sunderland Trophy for a man of the match performance in the Super League Grand Final win over Warrington.
He said: “That year we took out the Challenge Cup at Wembley, the Super League title at Old Trafford, and welcomed my son Boston into the world.”
Green, who represented the Australian Schoolboys in 2004, won the NRL Minor Premiership with Melbourne in 2016 and reached the NRL Grand Final in the same year.
He added: “I want to thank all of my coaches and team-mates, as well as the football staff and administrators, who have helped me live out my childhood dream.
“My mum and dad have been phenomenal. Ever since I was a kid they have always been there for me and provided every opportunity for me to succeed. I will never be able to thank them enough.
“My wife Sarah has been right by my side since we were teenagers, providing love and support throughout my entire career. More recently my kids, Boston and Sadie, have brought unending joy and laughter. They will only understand when they are older how much they have brought to our lives.
“Moving forward I have a strong desire to remain involved in rugby league and I’m excited to see how that plays out. For now though, my immediate focus will be spending time with my family and enjoying the little things together.
“I am thankful to all of the wonderful people in Newcastle and the Hunter region who have welcomed my family and I with open arms. I am also very grateful for the support of the Knights members and fans and will forever cherish my time representing our great club.”
Watch NRL and live stream every NRL game to keep up with how Tom Burgess, Josh Hodgson, Ryan Sutton, Elliott Whitehead, Luke Thompson and George Williams and all the others are getting on Down Under.