17 June 2022

George ready to Kruis off into sunset after Barbarians swansong at Twickenham

17 June 2022

George Kruis admits his career swansong at Twickenham on Sunday could prove an emotional occasion.

The ex-England and Saracens lock will hang up his boots after a final run-out with the Barbarians against his former international team-mates.

At the age of just 32, Kruis has taken a decision to walk away from the game relatively early and focus on his business interests.

Kruis (left) won 45 caps for England and featured in the 2019 World Cup final (Ashley Western/PA) (PA Archive)

For someone capable of such a level-headed choice, the small matter of playing rugby for one last time is itself unlikely to bother him sentimentally.

Yet with a large group of family and friends in attendance, he concedes it could be a different story.

“I probably don’t have too many emotions as a person myself but having 80 or so friends or family watching I’m sure will be emotional,” said Kruis, a 2019 World Cup finalist who has spent the past two years with Japanese club Panasonic Wild Knights.

“And I enjoy the fact that rugby can bring experiences to other people, or bring people out of the house.

“That side of it will be a little bit emotional but, in terms of playing a last game, I don’t think it should be too much.

A player would always want to play for the Barbarians and for it to be my last game will be quite nice.

“I’m loving it. It will be a nice memory. I’m pretty lucky to have had a good career and to have so many family and friends come in to watch my last game.

“A player would always want to play for the Barbarians and for it to be my last game will be quite nice.”

Kruis, who won 45 England caps, will now spend more time on his developing CBD and vitamin supplement company.

He has not closed the door completely on a return to the game but he feels it is very much the right time to move on.

Kruis will team up with Will Skelton for one last time (David Davies/PA) (PA Archive)

“I’d never say never but this last year has been tough, trying really hard to focus on something outside of rugby as well as inside,” said Kruis, who will line up in the second row alongside his former Saracens team-mate Will Skelton, the Australian, in a side otherwise dominated by Grand Slam-winners France.

“Over a season you start to see the effects of trying to juggle a couple of things full-time.

“So, I’d never say never but I wouldn’t do it alongside anything else.”

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