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21st Apr 2018

Former Wallaby centre retires at 28 after career-ending arm injury

Jack O'Toole

Former Wallabies centre Rob Horne has been forced to retire from rugby after injuring his arm in Northampton’s win over the Leicester Tigers last weekend.

Horne sustained the injury while attempting to tackle Tigers number eight Sione Kalamafoni with the club revealing that leading neurological consultants from The Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital determined that he had suffered nerve damage in his right arm.

Horne moved to the Northampton Saints last year after nearly a decade with the New South Wales Waratahs in Super Rugby.

The 28-year-old captained the club for the first time against Leicester with Saints interim head coach Alan Dickens describing the news as devastating.

“This is absolutely tragic news, and has been devastating for every member of the squad and staff here,” said Dickens.

“All our thoughts are of course with Rob and his family at this time.

“Rob is not only a world-class rugby player, but he’s an exceptional man. He is a hugely respected and popular member of the dressing room and this will be an enormous loss to Saints – both from a rugby and a personal perspective.

“Even though he had only been here for one season, I am sure he was destined to become a Club legend and, like everyone, I am deeply saddened that his career has been prematurely ended in this way.”

Horne was capped 34 times by the Wallabies and was selected in two Rugby World Cup squads with Australia.

Northampton CEO Mark Darbon said that the club would try and do everything they could to help Horne through his rehabilitation and transition into retirement and the next stage of his life.

“Rob has been the ultimate professional in his time at Franklin’s Gardens, and shone on the pitch in what has been a difficult season for Saints,” said Darbon.

“This news has shaken everyone at the Club, and I’m sure all of our supporters will join us in sending our best wishes to Rob, his wife Simone and their two young children.

“Rob will always be a part of the Saints family and we will, of course, do everything we can to help him through his rehabilitation and transition in to the next stage of his life.

“On behalf of the Club I would like to thank all the medical staff who have helped Rob so far, in particular the diligence and professionalism shown by the Saints and Tigers medical teams, who reacted quickly and could not have done more for him from the moment his injury was sustained.

“Rob has asked me to pass on his deepest gratitude for all of the messages of support he and his family have received, but would now like everyone to respect his privacy while they deal with this news.”

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