South Africa stalwart Francois Louw announces international retirement

Francois Louw became the second of the Springboks' World Cup-winning side to call time on their career in the green and gold after Tendai Mtawarira's announcement earlier this week. David Ramos -- World Rugby/World Rugby via Getty Images

South Africa loose-forward Francois Louw confirmed his retirement from international rugby on Sunday. In doing so, he became the second of the Springboks' World Cup-winning side to call time on their career in the green and gold.

Louw, who came off the bench for captain Siya Kolisi in the 32-12 victory over England in the World Cup decider on Nov. 2, won 76 test caps, having made his debut in 2010.

"I couldn't have asked for a more fulfilling career with the Springboks and I bow out with a full heart," he said in a media release from South Africa Rugby.

"I've had an amazing journey in international rugby. I've made friends for life in the game and created incredible memories with great people."

Springboks coach Rassie Erasmus, who stepped down after the World Cup final, was full of praise for the Bath loose-forward's contribution to their World Cup campaign.

"Flo was a real warrior of the back row," he said. "He was always ready to go where the fire was hottest and was the kind of tough-minded character that you'd always want beside you.

"He has been a tremendous servant of South African rugby and we're losing a lot with his retirement, not just in how he played, but in the calmness, insight and character that he brought to the group."

Louw's retirement follows that of prop Tendai Mtawarira, who won the last of his 117 caps in the World Cup final.