Manu Vatuvei has retired from rugby league following the discovery of a brain cyst.
The 33-year-old – who earned 29 caps for New Zealand and two for Tonga – holds the club try-scoring record at New Zealand Warriors with 152 in 226 games.
Vatuvei joined Salford in 2017 and made eight appearances for the Red Devils before leaving the club. He recently revealed that the discovery of a brain cyst ended his hopes of having a professional boxing career.
Posting on Instagram, Vatuvei wrote: “I wasn’t ready to or accept that my time is up and can honestly say it’s been the tough and now I’m ready to accept and announce my retirement.
“I would just like to thank everyone that has supported me through my career.
“To all the fans thank you for always supporting me and all the kind messages over the years, I will always remember them and cherish it for the rest of my life.
“I know I’ve been one of those [players] that always have you on the edge of your seat whenever I played or [a] high ball comes my way hahaha, but I like to always try put a good performance for you every time I’m out there on the field.”
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Well as you already know that I’ve been out of the game and talks that I’m retired or going to retire but I wasn’t ready to or accept that my time is up and can honestly say it’s been the tough and now I’m ready to accept and announce my retirement… . – Haven’t got much to say right now but just like to thank everyone that has supported me through my career.. to all The Fans thank you for always supporting me and all the kind messages over the years I will always remember them and cherish it for the rest of my life.. I know I’ve been one of those player that always have you on the edge of your seat when ever I played or high ball comes my way hahaha but I like to always try put a good performance for you every time I’m out there on the field… . – I’ve been so lucky to play in a few teams from grassroots(Scorpions/OtaBlu,ETMalosi), @nzwarriors , All Stars, @nzrugbyleague , @tonganrl and @salfordreddevilsrlfc l and have met a lot of friends who I can say are my family… to all the sponsors especially @puma @asicsnz @vodafonenz @airnz @bendonman @barkersclothing and many more but to everyone thank you so much cause you all have played a massive part in my career and I am Iublessed and grateful what everything.. . – To my Family and Friends thank you for having my back every time, through my highs and especially my lows when no one was there for me you guys were the ones that will be there and see the true side of me when people use to think I was the happiest person ever cause of my laughter but behind close doors I wasn’t. Without you I wouldn’t be where I am right now and thank you so much for being there for me and my lil family and even thou I’m having a tough time i can always rely on you guys to have my back and always be there for us. . – My long time mate and manager Peter Brown, the help and support that you have done for me and my family especially all the work people don’t see, it has never gone unnoticed and you have played the biggest part in my career getting my contracts sorted and just sorting out my life, so all I could focus on was footy. really appreciate everything you have done for me and especially my family… . – #OUA #lessssssgoooooo
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