Virimi Vakatawa
Vakatawa was a member of France’s Grand Slam winning side in 2021

France centre Virimi Vakatawa has been forced to retire for medical reasons, his club side Racing 92 have said.

Vakatawa did not play in Saturday’s season-opening win against Castres.

The club stated the French National Rugby League (LNR) had demanded the 30-year-old’s retirement.

“[We] have just been informed of the decision of the LNR’s medical committee to forbid Virimi Vakatawa from continuing his career in France,” the club said.

“Particularly saddened by this terrible announcement, Racing 92 gives its full support to Vakatawa and has immediately put in place all the arrangements to accompany its emblematic player as best as possible in these particularly difficult moments.”

Racing will hold a news conference on Tuesday, which France coach Fabien Galthie will attend.

The Fiji-born centre has won 32 caps and last played a Test match for France in the victory over Japan in July.

He struggled with a knee injury last season and did not feature in his country’s Six Nations Grand Slam win earlier this year.

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