Justin Marshall has announced his retirement from rugby.
The 36-year-old former New Zealand international scrum-half is set to make what could be his farewell appearance in Saracens' Guinness Premiership play-off clash at Northampton on Sunday.
Marshall won 81 caps for the All Blacks, scoring 24 Test tries, and was a mainstay of the Canterbury Crusaders side when it dominated Super Rugby, making more than 100 appearances.
He is the third most capped New Zealand international player in history, and the most capped All Blacks scrum-half. He featured in the 1999 and 2003 World Cups.
After heading to Europe in 2005, Marshall played for Leeds, the Ospreys and Montpellier before joining Saracens 18 months ago.
‘I have given a lot to the game over the past 17 seasons, but rugby has given me much, much more,’ he said.
‘When I was 19, I was in danger of going off the rails, but I was given a chance to move to Christchurch and play for Canterbury.
‘Later that year, I was picked for the All Blacks and this incredible journey began. I have been so fortunate to make so many friends in this game all around the world.
‘It has never been dull, and I have to thank my wife Nicolle and my children for supporting me during this period.
‘My career has made massive demands on them, and now we are all looking forward to going home to New Zealand and settling into something like a normal family life.
‘I just feel immensely grateful to all the talented players and coaches who have made my career so enjoyable and memorable.’
Marshall will remain involved in rugby, starting a new television career with Sky Sports NZ next month as well as continuing to work with Saracens.