The 36-year-old former captain says blue is enough at the end of a great career out of 107 caps.
Leonardo Giraldini has officially announced his retirement from international rugby after a great career between national and club selections. The call-up for Six Nations 2021 will arrive tomorrow.
The champion from Padua, 107 blue hats – led by Franco Smith on June 11, 2006 in Japan, and finally under Pierre Berbizier in Wales on December 5, 2020 – 17 captains lived, for example, on and off the pitch, one of the pillars of the blue generation formed by boys born in the early 80s ( , After the summer retreat of Alessandro Sani, only Sergio Paris remained in business) The heart of the enthusiasts of the early decades. Giraldini, a hooker born in 1984, made a huge contribution to the national team, reaching the absolute level in Six Nations in 2013, overcoming incredible misfortune and being a farewell obstacle on the field.
Former Petrarch, stronger than his adverse fate, recovered from a serious injury against France in Rome in March 2019 with pride and dignity and returned to the blue – three times – for the Autumn Nations Cup, 17 months later, with the qualifying presence of Franco Smith’s Provided.
For him, he also had the honor of wearing the glorious Barbarian version Included in the Fifteenth of the Pro14 decade, In his career (playing as a captain with Padua, Calvisano, Benetton, Leicester abroad – ’14 to ’16 – Toulouse, ’16 to ’19), two championships with Calvisano and Benetton respectively. Despite being injured in the final stages of the Transalpine Tournament, he won the championship in France in ’07 / ’08, ’09 / ’10 and ’18 / ’19. The chapter on his pro oval experience reserved for clubs is not yet closed, because, despite being currently out, Giraldini still has a possibility open, albeit a small one – prioritizing family and work (he graduated with a degree in economics and recently earned a master’s degree in business administration) – to continue playing.
Leonardo Giraldini’s FIR channel’s statements to official channels after the official announcement of his retirement from international rugby
I know he has not acquired the right to play for Italy and is doing everything possible to gain that right. I consider every call with the national team to be a unique and special occasion, to live with all possible energy, passion and respect, because these moments are never trivial, ”the champion began, wearing a blue shirt on every level before describing the special emotions given.
I have represented my country at every level, from the U16 to the four editions of the World Cup. I have on many occasions had the privilege of being the captain of Italy playing in all the most important tournaments in the Northern Hemisphere. Following the injury against France in 2019, I worked to the best of my ability to return to the top and call back with the national team: thanks to Franco Smith for giving me the opportunity to dress up last fall. ‘Blue once again, for confidence, would give me back the six nations he was going to start. Now, I think it’s the right time to say goodbye to international rugby, Italy, my teammates, the coaches who allowed me to play for an entire movement, and the incredible fans for the love they show me. My family for the basic support they have given me on this long adventure journey that has recently been demonstrated. I have a small door open for playing rugby, but now is the time to look beyond my professional future and family, ”explained Paduan.
“I have shared my country’s shirt with many of the most talented players and people of human depth, and with them we have had victories that will remain in my heart forever, from Flamingo against Wales in 2007 to France and the Ireland Six Nations in 2013. I have been very much represented by the jersey over the last twenty years. Say goodbye to the national team: There is a generational change that has already taken place for some time, and there are many interesting young people who are interested in them. Franco Smith and his staff give them the exact identity and the tools to compete at the highest level. Inside me, I always wear the blue shirt – Giraldini concludes – but others have to wear it on time It was an amazing journey, and the feelings I have experienced with all of you will carry with me for the rest of my life. “
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