10 Jan 2014

Mowen to quit Australian rugby

1:18 am on 10 January 2014

The Australian rugby captain Ben Mowan has announced he will quit Australian rugby and pursue a career in France from 2015.

Mowen says while his desire to play for Australia is still extremely strong, his priority is to spend more time with his wife and daughter.

Mowen has played 15 Tests for Australia after making his international debut in June 2013 against the British & Irish Lions.

The 29-year-old was appointed Wallabies captain during last season's Rugby Championship, and also lead the team throughout their Spring Tour to Europe, when Australia won four of the five matches played.

The Wallabies coach, Ewen McKenzie, says the decision means Mowen won't be eligible for national selection in 2015, which is when the next World Cup will be played.

But McKenzie says the door will remain open for the back rower if he wants to return to Australia.

Mowen will remain as captain of the Brumbies for the upcoming Super Rugby season