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Archie Club

Duffey to return to New Zealand with young family

NOTTINGHAM hooker Joe Duffey has announced the he will retire from professional rugby at the end of the season.

Duffey action

MOVING ON: Hooker Joe Duffey will retire from professional rugby at the end of the season.

Duffey, who has played more than 200 games over three spells with Nottingham, will return home to New Zealand with his young family as he turns his attention to life after the game.

And the 30-year-old intends to go out on a high, with the Meadow Lane club making it through to the play-off semi-finals for the first time in their history. Nottingham guaranteed themselves second place in the RFU Championship and their highest league finish in 21 years after their win against the Cornish Pirates on Sunday.

"I have some of the biggest games in my time with Nottingham still to look forward to," Duffey said.

"I'd like to be part of two sides that have won promotion and I'm determined to go out on a high note.

"Nottingham is a home away from home for my family, this is where my little boy was born so the city means a lot to me.

"My time with the club has been fantastic on and off the field from Ireland Avenue to Meadow Lane.

"All the people involved with Nottingham Rugby, all the fans that support this club, have helped create so many great memories and I'm sure there are more to come."

Duffey said the choice to return to New Zealand was an emotional one, having spent more than a decade, on and off, with the East Midlands outfit.

"I'm getting a bit older and have to start thinking about what to do after I hang my boots up permanently, so I reached the decision to go back to New Zealand to spend time with family and to start building towards getting a real job," Duffey said.

"The Provincial competition in New Zealand is amateur so there is a chance to continue to play while also taking a day job, which is ideal for me as I try find my feet out there again. I was a year through a building apprenticeship when rugby took off for me, so I'll probably try and catch back up on that."

2013-04-18T12:00:00

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