Wigan winger Dom Manfredi to retire at age of 27

James Gordon

Wigan winger Dominic Manfredi will retire at the age of the season for medical reasons.

Manfredi, 27, suffered a knee injury in training last week and has been advised to call time on his playing career.

A two-time Super League winner, he has been plagued by knee injuries including back-to-back ACL injuries on his left knee and another on his right, resulting in three reconstructions in just five years.

He said: “As everyone knows, I’ve had a lot of trouble with my knees, especially my left one since I was young. The number of injuries I’ve had to it has finally taken its toll.

“I’m in pain constantly and it’s effecting my quality of life. Over the last nine months, the pain has been increasing and I’ve had more symptoms, but I’ve been trying to battle through it. It’s come to a point where I’m struggling to get through a week in training.

“I’ve been expecting the news for a while because of the amount of pain I was in. I knew it wasn’t normal, but I just tried to hide it. It’s got to a point where I can’t hide it anymore which is why I went to see the surgeon. Nothing else can be done. I’m going to try and manage it as well as I can this year by having injections and getting the best physio treatment and rehab available.

“I’ve had some incredible lows, but I’ve also had some unbelievable highs. All in all, it’s been worth it. I’ve given my body to Rugby League, and I’d do it all again. I believe rugby has made me the person I am today.

“I want to go out on a high and do my best for the team. I know I’m struggling at the moment, but hopefully in a few weeks I feel a bit better, and I can get out there and do my part.

“I can’t thank the staff at the Club, the players and all the fans enough for all their support in my time playing. They’ve had my back through thick and thin and I couldn’t have done it without them. They’ve all been so good to me and I’m so grateful.”

Manfredi has been at Wigan since the age of 14, scoring 57 tries in 82 games.

He hopes to regain fitness later this year and play again before the end of the season with the help of pain-killing injections.

Warriors Executive director, Kris Radlinski, said: “We are all so proud of the journey that Dom has been on. He has overcome injury after injury but in the process, he has amassed a lifetime of memories.

 “The hours of work that Dom has put in on his own in the gym when nobody is around and then the constant strapping of ice on knees has ultimately taken it’s emotional toll.

“He is going to give it one last push for the remainder of this season and then we will chairlift him out whenever his last game comes. He needs all the Rugby League fans behind him on this last push.”