Sharpe to retire this year

2012-02-10 07:21

Sydney - Veteran Wallaby lock Nathan Sharpe announced on Friday he will quit all competitive rugby at the end of the season, bringing down the curtain on a career that has seen him play 101 times for Australia.

The 33-year-old, who made his Test debut in 2002, said he wanted to end speculation about his future and ensure his focus was only on helping his Western Force team to make the Super Rugby finals for the first time.

"My last game of professional rugby will be wearing the Emirates Western Force jersey," he said on the club's website.

"It is an emotional time for me, it’s one of those decisions you mull over and think 'are you going too early or too late' and I wasn't really sure of that until recently."

Sharpe is equal fourth as the most capped Wallabies player, behind only George Gregan, George Smith and Stephen Larkham and equal with David Campese.

He is entering his 15th season in top flight rugby and has captained Western Force since 2006.

Sharpe said he plans to move into the resources industry, while also working as a media commentator.