Brown loses his battle

Thu, 20 Dec 2012 09:59
Large alex brown gloucester Large gloucester general

Gloucester's England lock Alex Brown has been forced to retire because of a shoulder injury.

Gloucester's England lock Alex Brown has been forced to retire because of a shoulder injury.

Brown was hurt in the first game of the 2012-13 Premiership season, while captaining the team against Northampton Saint, and three months of rest did nothing to help.

On Thursday Brown, Gloucester's second row forward for nearly a decade, announced his retirement.

After nearly three months of rest and concentrated rehabilitation, it was evident that the nerve damage to his shoulder was significantly more serious than initially thought, and he underwent complex surgery in November to ascertain the severity of the injury in the hope that it would repair the damage.

Following the intense operation, however, Brown was told by physicians that, although the nerve-transfer would, in time, deliver an improvement of movement in day-to-day life, he would no longer be able to play professional rugby and must retire with immediate effect.

This shattering news has left Brown completely devastated and shocked.

"It's stating the obvious but I'm totally gutted," Brown said.

"I was so looking forward to this season and beyond.

"When the surgeon came in after the operation and told me that I would not be able to play rugby again, the news hit me hard and has been tough to deal with, especially as there has been a new dawn at Gloucester under Nigel Davies and I so wanted to be part of it.

"I've kept myself involved on match days, which has been a diversion but it's obviously not the same as playing."

He added: "I genuinely thought that I had a few good years left in me but it's not to be. I've had to take on board the advice I have received and what my body is telling me."

The three-times capped England international, despite the disappointment, remains grateful for the time he has spent in the game, particularly at Gloucester.

"I've been incredibly lucky to spend so many years playing in the top flight, firstly with my home town team, Bristol, and then to play for so many memorable years at Gloucester.

"I've made so many friends through playing rugby and have amassed a lifetime's worth of memories.

"Kingsholm has really become a 'home from home' to me, the passion showed by everyone at the club makes it such a special place, a place that will stay with me for the rest of my life."

Although his playing days have now sadly come to an end, Brown insists that he still has plenty to look forward to:

"I've still got lots of things to focus on and enjoy for the rest of the season; my continued work with the team and the testimonial activities that the committee have kindly organised for this year.

"It will give me an opportunity to thank everyone who has been so good to me over the years."

RPA Director, David Barnes, said: "I am so disappointed for Alex. I understand the frustration and uncertainty he will now be experiencing at being forced to retire from the game he loves.

"Alex is one of the most respected players across the Aviva Premiership for his commitment, professionalism and his understanding of the game.

"He has been synonymous with Gloucester for the last 10 seasons - an abrasive Shed favourite on the field and one of the nicest men you could wish to meet off it.

"The irony is not lost on us that this year Alex has generously been supporting Restart - The Players' Charity, to help other players who have suffered serious injury and illness, and now he too finds himself in this position.

"We will continue to work closely with Alex as he begins to plan the next stage of his life. He has had an outstanding rugby career and he possesses all the attributes needed to become equally as successful in his next career."

Brown joined Gloucester from Bristol Shoguns ahead of the 2003-4 season.

He has made a total of 227 Premiership appearances, which currently puts him in sixth place on the list of 'Appearances Made' since Premiership rugby began.

He is also the current record holder for 'Most Consecutive Premiership Starts', amassing 87 consecutive starts, proving to be a consistent performer throughout his career.

His Gloucester 1st team debut on 13th September 2003 was against Rotherham in the Premiership, and he went on to make a further 234 appearances for the 1st team, including 215 starts.

His England debut was against Australia in Sydney in 2006 and he gained his second and third caps on the tour to South Africa a year later in 2007.

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 27 May 2017
Sunwolves v Cheetahs 05h15 Tokyo
Highlanders v Waratahs 07h35 Dunedin
Rebels v Crusaders 09h45 Melbourne
Bulls v Hurricanes 13h05 Loftus Versfeld
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 13h30 London
Sharks v Stormers 15h15 Kings Park
Munster v Scarlets 17h15 Dublin
Jaguares v Brumbies 21h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 28 May 2017
Lions v Kings 12h30 Ellis Park Stadium
Wed, 31 May 2017
New Zealand U20 v Scotland U20 07h00 AIA Arena
England U20 v Samoa U20 07h00 Tbilisi
South Africa U20 v France U20 09h30 Tbilisi
Ireland U20 v Italy U20 09h30 AIA Arena
Argentina U20 v Georgia U20 12h00 Tbilisi
Australia U20 v Wales U20 14h30 Tbilisi
Fri, 02 June 2017
Blues v Reds 07h35 Auckland
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 26 May 2017
Reds v Force 26 | 40
Blues v Chiefs 16 | 16
Sun, 21 May 2017
Waratahs v Rebels 50 | 23
Sat, 20 May 2017
Kings v Brumbies 10 | 19
Munster v Ospreys 23 | 3
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 21 | 20
Lions v Bulls 51 | 14
Exeter Chiefs v Saracens 18 | 16
Sunwolves v Sharks 17 | 38
Force v Highlanders 6 | 55
Hurricanes v Cheetahs 61 | 7
Fri, 19 May 2017
Leinster v Scarlets 15 | 27
Stormers v Blues 30 | 22
Chiefs v Crusaders 24 | 31
Sat, 13 May 2017
Jaguares v Force 6 | 16
PREMIERSHIP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
Wasps 22 17 1 4 84
Exeter Chiefs 22 15 3 4 84
Saracens 22 16 1 5 77
Leicester Tigers 22 14 0 8 66
Bath 22 12 0 10 59
Harlequins 22 11 0 11 52
Northampton Saints 22 10 0 12 52
Newcastle Falcons 22 10 0 12 49
Gloucester 22 7 2 13 46
Sale Sharks 22 7 1 14 40
Worcester Warriors 22 5 2 15 33
Bristol 22 3 0 19 20