Head injuries force Edinburgh centre Taylor to retire at 25

·2-min read
Retiring at 25 - Edinburgh centre George Taylor (C) (AFP/thibaud MORITZ)

Edinburgh centre George Taylor said on Thursday he had retired from rugby union at the age of 25 following a "history of head injuries".

Taylor has not played for the Scottish club this season due to concussion.

"I've come to the conclusion that I should step away and move on to other opportunities," said Taylor in a club statement.

"It's certainly not been a quick decision. It's been thought through ever since I got a concussion while in pre-season back in August.

"It's been on my mind and I've made some sacrifices to try and prepare for life after rugby," added Taylor, who made his Edinburgh debut against Munster in November 2018.

Taylor -- whose brother also retired from rugby due to head injuries -- scored six tries in 38 appearances for Edinburgh.

"I spoke to the boys and told them my decision earlier this week," Taylor said.

"I thanked them for everything they've done in my career; they've been a massive part of it."

Edinburgh head coach Mike Blair sympathised with Taylor.

"It's never easy to see any player step away from the game at a young age, however, health and family always comes first," former Scotland scrum-half Blair said.

"It's clear that George hasn't taken this decision lightly in any way - rugby is the sport he loves, so I can't imagine how difficult it must have been for him."

Concussion has become a major issue for rugby union as it faces up to the long-term impact of head injuries caused by increasingly fitter and stronger players taking part in a contact sport.

In November, former New Zealand prop Carl Hayman announced he had early-onset dementia aged just 41.

Hayman has joined a concussion legal action launched by several ex-players including England's Steve Thompson and Alix Popham of Wales, against rugby authorities.

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