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Saracens back-row forward Ernst Joubert announces retirement

Saracens back-row forward Ernst Joubert has confirmed that he will retire from rugby at the end of this month.

South African Joubert, 35, joined Saracens in 2009 and has helped the club land two Aviva Premiership titles. He made more than 160 first team appearances.

"I've had an amazing time at Saracens," Joubert said in a statement released by his club.

"There is definitely a tinge of sadness when you make the decision to hang up your boots, but I am overwhelmed and joyful when I think of all the great memories I've made here.

"There are so many memories of my six years, it's hard to single any out. Being part of the club and seeing the club grow has been a real stand-out.

"I never imagined in my wildest dreams that I would be here for six years.

"The way the club has looked after me and my family has been amazing, and it almost makes it even more difficult to leave, but at 35 years old it's time to crack on with other things."

Saracens rugby director Mark McCall, meanwhile, paid tribute to Joubert.

"Ernst has been a truly fantastic player during his six years at Saracens," McCall said.

"He has played a huge role in helping us become a side that is challenging on the field and has been extremely important in establishing a brilliant culture off the field."

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