Patten to retire
Salford City Reds’ Australian full-back Luke Patten will hang up his boots at the end of the season and return Down Under, the club have announced.
Patten, 32, who is in his second season in Stobart Super League, broke the news to his team-mates this afternoon.
“My body has made this decision for me,” said Patten, who joined Salford on an initial three-year deal.
“I’m a player who has always got confidence from training really hard, but these days it takes me all week to recover from a game so I can’t do that as well I want to.”
Widely regarded at the best uncapped full-back in the Australian competition, the ‘General’ was unfortunate to ply his trade at the same time as Melbourne’s Billy Slater.
He played more than 300 NRL games, including 224 for Canterbury Bulldogs, and scored in excess of 100 tries before coming to England.
An ever-present last year, Patten missed his first match for the Reds when he sat out Sunday’s Carnegie Challenge Cup win at Whitehaven and he is hoping to help his side reach the play-offs before he hangs up his boots.
“The team has played better this year in patches and I have enjoyed that, but I’m still not at where I want myself to be,” he said.
“I want to go out after a strong season. I guess I don’t want to embarrass myself as the guy who had one season too many.
“I’m comfortable with the decision and want to go out playing really well and help the Reds make the top eight and look at beating Leeds in the next round of the Challenge Cup.”
Patten has spoken about possibly taking up refereeing or staying in the game on the administrative side, but he added: “I have no concrete plans to be honest.
“After today people will know I’m available and we’ll see what happens. I think refereeing is out of the question now because of the training but I certainly want to stay involved in the game.”