The former Chiefs Super Rugby captain Craig Clarke has announced his retirement from the sport after suffering ongoing concussion problems while playing for Irish club Connacht.
The 30-year-old left the Chiefs at the end of last year after five seasons with the franchise.
Clarke led them to back-to-back Super Rugby titles in 2012 and last year alongside co-captain Liam Messam.
The two-metre tall lock played just 15 games this year for Connacht, for whom he had signed a three-year contract.
However his leadership skills were quickly identified with former Blues now Connacht coach Pat Lam promoting him to on-field captain.
Clarke says his main regret on leaving the game was that he never became an All Black, though he says he'll sleep easy knowing he gave it a real crack, particularly in his last three seasons playing in New Zealand.