Cameron Smith makes shock Queensland and Australia representative retirement


Smith recalled returning home from last year's Origin series in a state of exhaustion as the toughness and brutality of Origin took a toll on him both on and off the field. I've been away from you for a long time but you've always wanted me to pursue my dreams'.

"It's been a fairly lengthy process for me to come to this decision, I probably started having small thoughts or some thoughts about finishing up my representative career past year, " Smith said.

Maroons coach Kevin Walters joked he would have liked Smith to play on in "30-minute spells".

"Looking back at it now I don't think that's fair on myself, I don't think that's fair on my family and also my teammates back at Melbourne Storm".

"Cameron has been a great player, but he has been a great person for the game", Walters said.

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"I would have loved to have played on for a lot longer", Smith said.

Smith said those weekends, when unable to play for Melbourne, he was lying on the couch or in bed exhausted, and he believed few realised the drain of playing at that level.

Queensland captain Cameron Smith says thoughts of retirement arose as early as last year's Origin series, citing a mentally and physically draining 2017 campaign as one of the main reasons for his shock decision.

Fox Sports is reporting the 34-year-old Smith will make the announcement at a media conference in Melbourne on Tuesday alongside Maroons coach Kevin Walters.

"We've lost our captain, our leader and our goal-kicker so it's a big loss for Queensland but it had to happen one day".

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This means Smith won't play in the upcoming Origin series, leaving a hole in the No. 9 jersey for Queensland.

Smith, the most-capped Maroon of all time, leaves a giant void in the Maroons side at hooker; a position he's had locked down in the Queensland side since 2003.

In that period he missed just one match - the series opener in 2010 due to injury - and won a record 26 matches.

Darius Boyd, Billy Slater or Greg Inglis are the most likely candidates to take over the captaincy, however, Boyd has battled form and fitness at Brisbane this season.

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