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Phillips calls time on Wales career

By Phil Blanche

Published 02/12/2015

Retiring: Mike Phillips
Retiring: Mike Phillips

Wales scrum-half Mike Phillips has announced his retirement from international rugby.

The Racing 92 player appeared in 99 Tests - 94 for Wales and five for the British and Irish Lions. But the 33-year-old did not play in the recent World Cup, left out of Warren Gatland's initial squad for the tournament before being recalled as cover for the injured Rhys Webb ahead of the opening game against Uruguay.

"This is a chance for me to close a chapter of my life. Playing for Wales has been a massive part of my life since I was 20 or 21," Phillips said.

Phillips won his first Wales cap against Romania in August 2003 and made a try-scoring debut in a 54-8 victory at Wrexham.

In all, he scored nine tries for Wales and was a key member of the teams that won the Six Nations title in 2013, Grand Slams in 2008 and 2012, and reached the semi-final of the 2011 World Cup.

Phillips represented three Welsh regions - Llanelli Scarlets, Cardiff Blues and the Ospreys - before moving to France in 2011, where he has played for Bayonne and Racing 92.

He won his final Wales cap in the 35-21 defeat to Ireland in a World Cup warm-up match in August.

"It's been amazing, a dream come true to play for Wales," Phillips said.

"Since I was young all I've wanted to do is play rugby for Wales.

"I've got some very special memories which I will cherish for the rest of my life. Nobody can take them away and I'm very proud of what I've achieved in the jersey."

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