Jonny Wilkinson looks to end his career on a high

Jonny Wilkinson has announced that he will retire from rugby at the end of the season

Jonny Wilkinson has announced that he will retire from rugby at the end of the season

First published in Rugby Basingstoke Gazette: Photograph of the Author by , Sports Reporter

FORMER Lord Wandsworth College pupil Jonny Wilkinson has announced that he is to retire at the end of the season.

However, the 34-year-old plans to go out on a high, by helping club side Toulon to win the Heineken Cup and French Top 14 final in his last two games.

“It goes without saying that I have an enormous number of people to thank for their support from all around the world, but especially here in France and in England,” Wilkinson said. “I sincerely thank you for everything you have given me and for making these last 17 years something I will never forget.

“Now, I'd like to focus all my energy on the team and the final two games of my career.”

Wilkinson made 91 appearances for England and kicked the drop-goal that won the 2003 World Cup. He is one of just five men to have scored more than 1,000 points in international rugby, with his total of 1,246 second only to Dan Carter on the all-time list.

He began his club career at Newcastle Falcons, before signing for French side Toulon in 2009. Last year, he helped them to win the Heineken Cup, kicking 11 points in the final, and was voted European Player of the Year.

Wilkinson will be hoping to help Toulon retain the Heineken Cup on Saturday, when they take on Saracens in the final at the Millennium Stadium, in Cardiff (kick-off 5pm).

That will be his final game in Britain, with his last match taking place across the English Channel next weekend, when Toulon take on Castres in the French Top 14 final.

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