James Hanks, the forward for the Aviva Premiership Rugby Football Union club the Exeter Chiefs, has been forced to hang up his boots following his failure to recover from a serious neck injury.
The 29 year old suffered the injury during the club’s win against Bath Rugby in the semi final of the LV=Cup last month and following several visits to specialists, he has been told to end his ten year long career.
With Hanks retiring, he becomes the third Chiefs player to call time on his career this season due to injury, following the likes of hooker Chris Whitehead and skipper Tom Hayes.
Hanks was a part of the Exeter Chiefs side that won the RFU Championship back in 2010 to earn promotion to the top flight, and according to the player, he has had lots of great memories as a player but if he had to pick one, the Championship winning night at Bristol would be it.
He added that it was the night that changed the club – the players, the fans and everyone associated with the Chiefs. Hanks admitted that he couldn’t have asked for more from his time with the club, having spent ten glorious years with them, but it was unfortunate to have his career finished a little earlier than anticipated.
James Hanks also said that the injury was serious but he is now on the mend and once he is fully fit, he will consider his options now that he has hung up his boots.
The forward made his debut for the Exeter Chiefs in a National League One match against the Cornish Pirates back in 2005 and since then; he has been a regular in the side and was a key player during the club’s promotion campaign in the RFU Championship in 2010.