Carter says sayonara to Japan but no word on his future

WELLINGTON (AFP) – Three-time world player of the year Dan Carter announced yesterday he is leaving his Japanese club Kobe Steelers, but the 38-year-old gave no indication whether his illustrious career is over.

Carter, who holds the world record for the most points in Test rugby and was a World Cup winner in 2011 and 2015, confirmed on Instagram that with the Covid-19 pandemic bringing the Japanese season to an end his time with the club was over.

“I’ve gone a bit quiet since the Japanese Rugby Union (JRU) announced they are cancelling all their competitions this season,” Carter said.

“I know it’s the right decision with what the world is going through at the moment but I would have loved to try help my @kobelcosteelers_official family win another top league, and I’m gutted I can’t do this.

“I want to thank the club, fans and my team mates for welcoming me and making the last two seasons some of the most enjoyable rugby I have ever played.”

The champion fly-half first played for French club Racing 92 after retiring from Test rugby following the 2015 World Cup, before signing a two-year deal with Kobe Steelers in 2018.

He made no mention of his next move, leaving open the possibility he may play one more domestic season in New Zealand where is he waiting out the pandemic with his family.