Trent Merrin is saying goodbye.
Trent Merrin is saying goodbye.

Origin, Kangaroos star quits immediately

St George star Trent Merrin has shocked footy fans by announcing his retirement from the NRL, effective immediately.

The former NSW Origin and Kangaroos prop won't finish the season with the Dragons, calling it quits after 250 first grade appearances having "outgrown the game".

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"I'm very happy to be able to finish my career on my own terms. This was a decision where I had to be true to myself," Merrin said. "I have outgrown the game and the game has outgrown me, although my appreciation for rugby league will never die.

"My dream growing up was always to play for the Dragons, a club I have always held in high esteem. I have achieved everything my younger self ever wanted and that is something I'll always be grateful for.

"I wouldn't have been able to achieve everything I have without my family and the sacrifices they made. They, alongside my beautiful fiancee and baby boy, have been there throughout the highs and lows of my career.

"They also rode the wave of emotion when it came to this decision to conclude a wonderful career. I'm keen to see the younger players step up in my place as the Dragons continues its exciting journey."

Merrin, 31, started his NRL career with the Dragons in 2009 and established himself as one of their most important players. He was part of their 2010 premiership-winning side and became a staple in the NSW Origin team, playing 13 games for the Blues between 2011-2015.

The front-rower moved to Penrith in 2016 and played 72 games for the Panthers but struggled to recapture his best form during the latter stages of his stint in Sydney's west.

Merrin represented Leeds for a year in the UK Super League before returning home to link up with the Red V again in 2020.

He played seven Tests for Australia but even though St George look like a top four side this season, Merrin has chosen to walk away.

Dragons coach Anthony Griffin paid tribute to the tough-as-nails workhorse.

"I had the privilege of coaching Trent across four seasons of his career. He's a tremendous team man and will be sorely missed throughout the playing group," Griffin said.

"Trent has accomplished everything there is to do in rugby league and leaves behind a great legacy as a premiership winner with St George Illawarra."

 

 

Originally published as Origin, Kangaroos star quits immediately