Players in the News - September 2021

September 08 2021

Nathan Hirayama - Canada 7s 2016
© pjCARR

Nate Hirayama Announces International Retirement

Nathan Hirayama announced his retirement from international rugby 7s on Instagram. The statement is below.

I’ll never forget meeting Serevi on my first tour to Dubai. For the people who don’t know who the man is or for some of the Canadian contingent, I felt like I was meeting Gretzky. I was 18 at the time and he told me that I had another 20 years left in my playing career, “minimum”. He was 38, still carving the World Series, still the man.

Well I’m not gonna play for as long as the King did, but 15 years later I’m sitting here reflecting on my career, trying to figure out where the time went, and feeling nothing but gratitude. Grateful for my family and friends, the supporters, the staff, my opposition. But mostly I’m grateful for my teammates and to this game that has given me so much. It’s been an honour to wear the maple leaf on my chest and to have been able to compete against the world’s best, alongside my friends. Truly a dream come true for a kid from Richmond who fell in love with rugby in high school.

I’ll always care deeply about this game, and I’m looking forward to supporting the next/future gen of rugby players both here in Canada and around the world however I can.

Thank you all for everything.

He chose this photo for his farewell message.

You can view the post here along with the comments, 230 of them at the time of writing.

His message doesn't specify the details of his retirement but seems to focus on the 7s game where Hirayama became a legend of the game. He is the 3rd all time scorer on the World 7s series, quite an accomplishment for a player from Canada. The players above him are from Tier 1 nations, Ben Gollings from England and Tomasi Cama from New Zealand.

Will Hirayama consider dabbling in the world of XVs as Canada's #10? No doubt some are wondering, or is he done with international rugby and it's on to another career.

Either way we wish him all the best, he's been one of Canada's finest and a classy individual.

Pemberton Holmes
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