Friday 28 October 2016

Concussion strikes again to end White's career

Nathan White
Nathan White

Ireland tight-head Nathan White has become the latest casualty of concussion, ending a stellar career.

The 35 year-old was a respected captain at Waikato, played for Leinster 24 times, Connacht 58 times and earned 13 Ireland caps.

The Irish Rugby Union Players' Association Chairman Rob Kearney spoke of the "worrying" trend of concussion-caused retirements being on the increase.

"The more awareness we have about it, the more experts get involved, the more we respect return to play protocols, the more we have honesty from players, the more we do that, we can only try and get better," said Kearney.

"You know the collisions in the game are getting bigger.

"I think that is something that everyone realises, so the threat of these sort of injuries and these types of concussions are probably going to be on the up

"We need to make sure we can protect players we need to be doing what we are and more."

Kearney also took time to back the IRFU's approach to the dangers of concussion.

"Speaking on behalf of most of the players, we do have a huge amount of trust in the Union and the medical advice and expertise we get from them," he said. It was left for White to sign off in typically humble style as his family return home to New Zealand.

"While it's disappointing to finish up this way and not on my own terms, I feel that I can look back at my rugby career with a lot of pride," he said.

"I am retiring at 35 years of age and with so many great memories from my time playing in both New Zealand and Ireland."

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