French 'artist' Michalak calls time on rugby career

Lyon (AFP) –


Iconic French fly-half Frederic Michalak says he has no regrets ahead of his last Top 14 home tie with Lyon on Saturday as the self-described "artist" prepares for retirement at the age of 35.

The top points scorer in French Test history with 436, who played 10 seasons as fly-half at Toulouse, may be best remembered for a World Cup quarter-final pass that dumped the mighty New Zealand out of the 2007 edition and sent France into both raptures and the semi-final.

"I feel good and I've no regrets," said Michalak, who will turn out for Lyon at home to Montpellier on Saturday in the last round of games in the Top 14 regular season.

"It's a tough decision, not easy to take, so I'm savouring every last moment."

"The dream would be to go a little further," said Michalak of his fifth-placed side who can go into the play-offs if they finish in the top six.

"It's a wise decision. I could have done another year but it's too physically demanding. You see some great athletes out there, and maybe that leaves a little less space for the artists such as myself," said the relatively slightly-built Michalak.

"I've always played to win and we want to win (the Top 14) with Lyon, I feel calm and determined," said the man with three French and six European titles.

"I'm quite relieved to have come to the end," he admitted.

Michalak played 77 times for France, with whom he won four Six Nations titles including three Grand Slams.