Champion league larrikin announces retirement

1 month ago 10
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Larrikin champion James Maloney has announced his retirement from professional rugby league after a swansong in the Super League.

Maloney, 35, has called time on his career after a couple of seasons with Catalans Dragons. He made the announcement on Tuesday (AEST) and will finish up at season's end.

"The time has come to hang up the boots from professional footy," the cheeky five-eighth wrote on his social media accounts.

"It's been one hell of a ride and I've loved every minute of it. Thanks to everyone who has played a part in my career along the way, most importantly my beautiful wife Jess Maloney, who has been there from the start.

"Now to finish on a great note."

James Maloney of Catalans Dragons. (Getty)

Catalans are currently the runaway leaders in Super League, with a 16-2 record. Maloney has made a habit of winning wherever he has played during his career.

He played a handful of games at Melbourne before becoming a star at the Warriors, leading to a big contract with the Sydney Roosters. He won a premiership with the Roosters in his first season at the club, 2013.

He won another NRL title in 2016 with Cronulla, a maiden premiership for the Sharks, and was an invaluable halves partner for Nathan Cleary at Penrith during the rise of the current Panthers side.

He also partnered Cleary for NSW in State of Origin football and won a pair of series in 2018-19, finally breaking Queensland's dominance. He won the 2019 decider alongside Mitchell Pearce, his halves partner in the 2013 Roosters grand final victory.

In all, he played 247 NRL games for 64 tries. He played 14 Origins matches and also represented Australia in three Tests.

Due to the scarcity of genuine match-winning halves in the NRL, there was ongoing speculation about a comeback to Australian football for Maloney. It was not to be.

James Maloney after winning Origin III in 2019. (Getty)

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