Australian superstar Pocock calls time on Super Rugby career

Canberra (AFP) –


Injury-plagued Australian superstar David Pocock retired from Super Rugby Tuesday, but is hanging on to his World Cup dreams as he fights to be fit for the competition in Japan.

Pocock, 31, has failed to shake off a calf injury that has dogged his season with the ACT Brumbies and there had been speculation he would sit out the rest of the season to ensure he can play in the World Cup from September to November.

"After 13 years of professional rugby, I'm looking forward to the challenges the rest of this year holds and also thinking about what comes next," Pocock said in a statement released by the Brumbies.

The Canberra side said Pocock's injury is a "rare calf strain that is unfortunately not progressing as hoped and needs further time to heal".

"No exact timeframe for a return to playing can be provided at this stage," the club added.

Pocock has a contract with the Panasonic Wild Knights in Japan after the World Cup.

The 77-Test veteran will not seek a new contract with Australian Rugby after it runs out this year, but will remain eligible to play for the Wallabies.

Australia has the so-called "Giteau's Law", which allows players with 60 caps who have played seven Super Rugby seasons to continue to be eligible for national selection after they move overseas.

Pocock has yet to call time on his international career, but he told the Canberra Times: "I haven't put anything in stone, but I think that's it."

"I feel like I've put a lot into my rugby, I've got a huge amount out of it and I'm very grateful for the opportunities I've had.

"But there's plenty of other stuff out there to do, and it's time to start stepping into whatever that's going to be."