Worcester Warriors prop Adam Black has today announced he will retire from professional rugby at the end of the current season.
The front row star – who has played 48 games for Warriors and been a cornerstone of the pack – has decided to hang up his boots to explore an exciting new business opportunity away from rugby.
Head Coach Richard Hill said: “Adam is one of the larger than life characters at the club who has made a massive impact both on and off the field.
“His experience and enthusiasm has been a huge asset and he always looks for the positive no matter what. That optimism means the dressing is always an upbeat place with the right atmosphere. Adam’s maturity and guidance has also helped bring on players like Oliver Tomaszczyk this season.
“When you know you are coming towards the end of your playing career it can be easy to coast home. But Adam has never let his standards drop, has got fitter and fitter as this season has gone on and cemented his place in the front row.
“Adam is now determined to retire on a high note and his determination to help the Warriors return to the Premiership has been inspiring. In the closing minutes of the semi-final against Bedford, when we had a series of crucial scrums, he turned to Greg Rawlinson and told him this was not going to be their last game. That sums up his desire and passion for the club.
“We would have loved to have kept him on, but he has made a brave decision to concentrate on life after rugby and new opportunities. We wish him and his family every success in the challenges ahead. Adam will be missed and will always be welcome back here at Sixways.”
Black made the move to Warriors from Newport Gwent Dragons in June 2009 on a two-year deal and has excelled throughout his stay.
The loosehead was previously the Dragons’ appearance record-holder, having moved to the club when Welsh rugby went regional. He became the first player in the history of Celtic League rugby to reach 100 appearances and the first Dragon to rack up a century in all competitions.
The Essex-born forward, capped by England at Under-21 level, began his senior playing career with London Wasps before heading to Wales via Bedford and Sale Sharks. “I know it’s the right time for me to retire,” said Black. “It was always going to be a hard decision to make, especially when the club was keen for me to stay, but I’ve always said one of the main things I wanted to do was retire myself rather than be retired.
“A fantastic opportunity has come up to make something else for myself away from rugby and it only right for me and my family that I take that. I know it’s the time to end my playing days.
“I’ve really enjoyed my time at Worcester Warriors. The boys have worked extremely hard this year and we have developed a strong winning mentality. I believe the lessons learnt from this season will put the club in a strong position and we have recruited strongly for the future.
“Worcester has some great backers and amazing fans that really deserve success. I have played with some of the best boys I have ever met and I truly wish them every success.”