Dan Hipkiss: Bath centre forced to retire through injury

Dan Hipkiss

Bath and former England centre Dan Hipkiss has been forced to call time on his playing career because of a shoulder injury.

The 30-year-old former Leicester man, capped 13 times by his country, first suffered the injury in January.

After seeking the advice of medical professionals, he has decided the best option was to retire.

"It's not how anyone wants to leave the game, but when a doctor tells you it's time you have to listen," he said.

Hipkiss, who only recently signed a contract extension at the Recreation Ground, told the club's website: "I've loved my time at Bath and was really looking forward to another year here.

"The club have made some great signings in the likes of Jonathan Joseph, George Ford and Anthony Watson, and I was excited to play alongside them and be part of their development, as well as the club's future."

Hipkiss began his career at Welford Road, joining the club as a 15-year-old and going on to make 129 appearances for the East Midlands outfit.

It was during his time with Tigers that he made every one of his 13 England appearances, before leaving in 2011 to join Bath.

But he has now been forced to end his playing career with immediate effect.

"Dan is a great character to have around the squad," Bath head coach Gary Gold said. "The knowledge of and enthusiasm for the game that he has is something we will really miss around the place.

"He'd just signed a new contract to stay on with the club, and we were looking forward to him helping us develop some of the younger talent that we have coming into the squad.

"It's never nice when one of your players is forced into making this decision, but we wish Dan all the very best with whatever he does next."