World Cup star Catt hangs up his boots

WORLD CUP-winning legend Mike Catt will bring an end to his glittering playing career when he makes a final appearance for London Irish against Northampton on Saturday.

The 38-year-old versatile back made over 300 club appearances for both the Exiles and Bath in a career spanning 18 years, while also winning 75 caps for England and one for the British and Irish Lions, in 1997.

He now steps down to develop his coaching career with the Exiles, where he will continue to work as the club’s attack coach.

Undoubtedly, the highlight of Catt’s career came in the 2003 World Cup final victory over Australia where he came off the bench and played a part in Jonny Wilkinson kicking over that stoppage time drop goal.

“I’ve been fortunate to have had an enjoyable and successful career as a player at club and international level,” Catt said. “London Irish has given me the opportunity to make the transition from playing to coaching, and the time is right for me to focus full-time on that role.”

South African-born Catt made his debut at Bath in 1992 and won four league titles and a Heineken Cup with the club before joining the Exiles in 2004.

There, he made 95 appearances, scoring 99 points, while retaining his England place and becoming the oldest player at 36 to play in a World Cup final when England lost to the Springboks in 2007.