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GAME OVER FOR JOHNS - Australian Rugby league News
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globalrugbyleague - Tue, 10 Apr 2007 22:53:00 GMT
Considered by most to be the greatest rugby league player of all time, Andrew Johns has retired from the game he revolutionised, effective immediately.

The Newcastle Captain underwent scans in Newcastle this morning to determine the extent of a neck injury he suffered last Thursday night in a routine training exercise. Following medical advice from leading neck surgeon, Professor John Yeo and Knights specialist Dr Neil Halpin, Andrew has accepted medical recommendations to end his career.

“Andrew has been examined today by Professor John Yeo. He has been advised to retire from playing football forthwith due to the risk of serious spinal chord injury”, said Dr Halpin.

“We do not believe that surgery, injections or physical therapy would improve his neck sufficiently for him to resume football safely.”

Andrew’s decision lowers the curtain on a brilliant career, beginning with his first grade debut against the Gold Coast Seagulls in April 1993.

In his 15 years at the elite level, Johns has achieved every milestone possible with three Dally M awards, two Golden Boots, 23 State of Origin appearances for New South Wales and 21 Tests, including two World Cups and the 2001 Kangaroo Tour.

During his 10 year representative career he captained Australia and New South Wales.

He exits Rugby League as the game’s all time highest point scorer, the second highest goal scorer and the knights most capped player with 249 first grade games.

Speaking at today’s Media Conference, Andrew Johns said he wishes to thank the knights, his team mates and the club’s fans for the outstanding support and encouragement during his 19 year association.

“It’s been a great honour to play for the Knights,” he said.

“I look forward to continuing my relationship with the club and the players.”

“While Andrew’s departure leaves a gap almost impossible to fill, we should remember the years of enjoyment we’ve had watching the player who has become the best in the world and played his talents in such a way his performances have been held in awe,” said knights Chairman, Peter Corcoran OAM.

“It’s important we remember the Joey who has given us so much pleasure instead of the Joey who has been forced to retire while he still has so much to give our great game

Andrew has singularly been the reason why so many people are now avid fans of rugby league. We thank him for that and our thoughts are with him at this difficult time.”

“Andrew’s symptoms should settle and it is expected that he will be able to live an otherwise normal life,” Dr Halpin said. - Read More, Here