HARLEQUINS NUMBER EIGHT Nick Easter has retired from rugby to take up a coaching position with the club today.

The former England number eight bows out of the game after 12 years at The Stoop, in which time he has made a club-record 281 appearances for Quins. Yesterday, the Premiership club announced the signing of George Naoupu – an experienced replacement for the new coach.

Easter also made 54 appearances for England, the last of which came at the 2015 Rugby World Cup, when he became the oldest player to score a Test hat-trick in England’s win against Uruguay.

The 37-year-old is now excited for the next chapter in his career.

“After accepting the opportunity of being a coach-player by John Kingston, I took some time to think about my career,” he said.

“I thought, why not grab the opportunity of becoming a coach with both hands, give it my best shot and feel privileged to be in a position to go out on my own terms after 12 great years as a player for Harlequins.

“I’m a few weeks into my role now and I’m thoroughly enjoying it. Having had five weeks in the off-season to finalise it and four weeks now as a coach, I don’t regret my decision and I can’t wait for the new season to begin.”

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