Cape Town - Springbok prop Tendai "Beast" Mtawarira shocked the rugby world when he announced his international retirement on Wednesday.

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SA Rugby's press release wasn't clear whether "Beast" would still be playing for the Sharks, or abroad, stating only that the 34-year-old would be quitting Test rugby.

Many were left surprised by the timing of the announcement, considering Mtawarira put in a remarkable shift in the Rugby World Cup final against England last Saturday.

In addition, a tour of South Africa by the British & Irish Lions looms some 18 months away in mid-2021.

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Factfile on Tendai "Beast" Mtawarira:

Born: August 1, 1985

Place of birth: Harare, Zimbabwe

Tests played: 117

Tests won: 74

Tests lost: 38

Tests drawn: 5

Tests started: 102

Tests as a substitute: 15

Test debut: v Wales in Pretoria, June 14, 2008

Last Test: v England in Yokohama, November 2, 2019

Test points: 10 (2 tries v Italy in Cape Town, June 21, 2008 and v Fiji in Wellington, September 17, 2011)

Yellow cards: 1

Red cards: 0

Interesting facts:

- Mtawarira played against 15 different countries during his career, beating every one at least once. He has 100% win records against Fiji, Namibia, Samoa and the USA. No surprise that his worst win % is against New Zealand (6/20).

- Mtawarira is the third-most capped Springbok (117) of all time behind Victor Matfield (127) and Bryan Habana (124).

- With his 117 caps, Mtawarira is the joint-14th most capped international forward of all time and the fifth most capped prop ever.

List of titles and achievements:

1 - Rugby World Cup

1 - Rugby Championship

1 - Tri-Nations

1 - British Lions tour

3 - Currie Cup

159 - Super Rugby caps

Go well, Beast. Thanks for the memories.

- Compiled by Garrin Lambley