Rugby Union

Andrew Sheridan forced to retire from rugby

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Former England international Andrew Sheridan has been forced to retire on medical grounds, according to ESPNscrum.

The ex-Lions prop suffered a neck injury last year whilst playing for French side Toulon.

The coveted 34-year-old has starred in two World Cups for his country - losing in the final in 2007 - whilst having featured in the English Premiership for Bristol, Sale Sharks and Richmond.


Sports management company James Grant, said on their official website: “Andrew has failed to recover from a neck injury sustained last season playing for Toulon and the subsequent operation he underwent, back in February.

“Andrew will now focus on completing his qualifications in Wine, before looking to forge a new career in the trade.”

Sheridan was only capped 40 times by England, but has been a star player everywhere he has gone.

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The prop started his professional rugby career out at Richmond in the Premiership, but only spent a season at the London-based club before moving west to Bristol.

After four years and 58 top-flight appearances, Sheridan made a move that ultimately helped shape his career.

North to Sale

Once again journeying across the country, the loosehead travelled north to Sale, where he spent nine glorious seasons with the Sharks, winning two trophies during his time at the club.

His first came in 2005, when the Greater Manchester side lifted the European Challenge Cup, beating French side Pau.

The following year, Sheridan featured ten times as Sale won their first Premiership trophy, defeating favourites Leicester Tigers convincingly in the play-off final.

Yet, one of the Londoner’s greatest achievements came in his second season at the Sharks.

International star

Although he played for an England XV against the Barbarians during his debut year at Sale, he had to wait until November 2004 to win his first full international cap for the national side, facing Canada in 70-0 victory.

Sheridan didn’t star in the Six Nations until 2006, but featured in the biggest rugby competition of all, the World Cup, the following year.

During the competition in France, the prop featured in every game, including in the final against South Africa, where an inspired Percy Montgomery was needed to kick the Springboks to a 15-6 victory.

Revenge with Lions

The 34-year-old was given the opportunity to exact revenge on the 2007 World Cup winners when playing on the British and Irish Lions tour two years later.

Despite a narrow defeat in the second tour match on his Lions debut, Sheridan helped them to a cruising 28-9 victory to end a disappointing series on a high.

Sheridan was back in the World Cup three years ago but featured just once, facing Argentina, which turned out to be his last match for England.

French affair

Following his success at Sale, he moved abroad to Top 14 side Toulon in 2012, where he continued to be a beast, starring in the Heineken Cup final victory over fellow French club Clermont Auvergne in his debut season.

But injury prevented him from helping his team-mates to retain the title, after picking up a neck problem in 2013.

The prop will now hang up his boots and move into wine industry, but the 6ft 5in man mountain will be sorely missed in the game and will always be regarded as one of England’s finest props.

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