St Helens have confirmed forward Joel Thompson will retire from the sport at the end of the 2021 season.
Thompson signed a two-year-deal with Saints in October 2020 after joining from Manly Sea Eagles, but he has sadly decided to return home at the end of the current campaign in a year which will be his last as a professional player.
Reacting to the news, he said: “Firstly I want to thank everyone at St Helens for giving me the opportunity to play for this great Club. I want to thank the players and of course the fans for welcoming me so openly.
“I also want to pay thanks to Kristian Woolf for putting his trust in me and for the way he has looked after me since I came over here.
“It’s not been an easy decision for me to call time on my career, but I do feel the end of the season is the right time to do that.
“Family comes first for me and that is ultimately why I am making this tough decision to return home at the end of the year.”
Saints Head Coach Kristian Woolf added: “I knew when we brought Joel into the Club what a professional he is and working with him has only emphasised that to me.
“He has vast experience and he is such a tough competitor. That’s what makes him the player he is and that is why he has such a glittering career. Over the short time he has been here we have really valued his input and his influence amongst the group.
“I know how tough it has been for Joel’s wife Amy and the girls, but they fit into this club really well and we all thoroughly understand and respect his and his family’s decision. We now want to support Joel and his family to ensure they enjoy the rest of their time with us.”