Dyldam Parramatta Eels centre Beau Champion has today announced his retirement from the NRL, after sustaining a knee injury earlier this season.
After 107 NRL games, 28-year-old Champion will hang up the boots and turn his attention to running a fitness business and working in the community.
“As a kid, my goal was to play just one NRL game, and to play for the past ten years is something that I’ll treasure and look back on, especially the great memories I’ve made over the years,” Champion said.
“It’s unfortunate it had to end through injury, but it’s something I’ll look back on as a positive and something great that I achieved in my life.”
A South Sydney junior, Beau played 80 games at the Rabbitohs from 2005-10 and 2013-14, as well as stints at the Melbourne Storm and Gold Coast Titans, before joining the Blue and Gold in 2015.
He also played two City Origin games, and represented the Indigenous All Stars for two games in 2010-11.
“I’m very thankful to Brad Arthur and the Parramatta club for giving me the opportunity this year to play NRL, and I worked really hard in pre-season, but unfortunately injury stopped it,” Champion said.
“I’ve had a really great time here, made a lot of friends, and the fans were always great; I’m just sorry it had to end this way and I couldn’t give more to the club because the club gave me so much.”
“It’s an impressive effort for anyone to play 100 NRL games, and the way Beau came back from injuries over his career showed his good attitude,” Head Coach Brad Arthur said.
“Beau only joined the club this year, but we’ll miss having him around.”
“Beau has worked very hard with our community programs both before and after he injured his knee, and has been a great ambassador for our club and rugby league this year,” Parramatta Eels Acting CEO, John Boulous, said.
“We wish him all the best in his future endeavours.”