Ex-England international Jermaine McGillvary makes retirement admission

Josh McAllister
Jermaine McGillvary, News Images.

Photo by Mark Cosgrove/News Images.

Jermaine McGillvary admits that a combination of his body and Huddersfield head coach Ian Watson will play a part on his decision to carry on beyond 2023 or not.

The ex-England international is in his last year of his contract with the Giants, and is yet to decide if he will go again in 2024.

McGillvary, 34, has made more than 300 appearances for Huddersfield, having made his debut back in 2010.

He was a part of the side that claimed the League Leaders’ Shield in 2013 with 19 tries in 27 games, and was included in Super League’s Dream Team later in 2015.

Capped 17 times with England, McGillvary announced his retirement from the international game last year, having scored 12 tries for his country, as well as representing Great Britain in 2019. 

Injuries have limited the prolific winger to just four appearances so far this year, and he knows that his form and body for the rest of the season will have an impact on his decision to play on or not. 

“It will be my body and the coach that decides that.” – Jermaine McGillvary

 “If I do, it will probably be one more year absolutely maximum,” McGillvary said. 

“But I’ve still not decided yet, I haven’t sat down with Watto (Ian Watson). I’m probably not in a position to at the moment. 

“I’ve not played that much. I’m still getting little injuries and stuff like that which has put me out.

“It’s probably down to me and how I perform and how I keep fit and stuff like that.

“If I can perform and we’re doing well, it gives me more of a shout of getting a new deal. If not, it might be that that’s it for me.

“I enjoy it. I probably say I enjoyed it more when I was younger! 

“It’s not nice after games when it takes a little bit longer to recover. I’d say it’s tougher to recover now.

“But I still enjoy it. I will miss it, that’s why I probably do want to do an extra year. But at the end of the day, it will be my body and the coach that decides that. 

“When I know for a fact when it is time, I will proper miss it. It’s given me everything.”

Jermaine McGillvary on injuries, 2023 form and time left in the game

McGillvary has struggled with shoulder and hamstring injuries so far this season limiting his game time, missing fixtures against Salford, St Helens and Castleford.

He made his return in the recent 26-14 victory over Catalans at the John Smith’s Stadium, with growing competition for places on the wing under Watson with the likes of Jake Bibby, Sam Halsall, Ash Golding and Innes Senior all in the squad.

“The little injuries have been non-stop recently,” McGillvary added.

“I don’t know know if it’s old age or whatnot. But it’s always good be be back out there.

“I know I don’t have much time left in me, so every game counts for me and it means a lot to get out there and play. 

“My performances have to be of a level. There’s a lot of top, young players in my position now, probably more than usual. Usually, it’s just me and I’m pretty much guaranteed and that’s not the case anymore.

“And I reckon, if I’m honest, if Ash Golding was fit, I’d still be waiting. Even though I’ve been injured, I was probably ready to go against Salford, but Ash Golding has been playing really well, so I couldn’t argue really.

“Now I’ve got the chance, I just need to try and keep my shirt now.”

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