Former Salford Red Devils and London Broncos prop Olsi Krasniqi has been forced to retire due to a brain injury.
Born in the Albanian capital of Tirana, Krasniqi passed through the London Broncos academy set-up to make almost 100 appearances in the capital after debuting as a mere 17-year-old.
A move to Salford Red Devils and then Toronto Wolfpack brought Krasniqi back to the Broncos ahead of the 2019 season.
But, now the 29-year-old has swapped his playing boots for his coaching shoes to take over at Hemel, and he detailed just why he has decided to hang up his boots on social media.
Krasniqi wrote: “The time has come for me to finally announce my retirement from Rugby League. Unfortunately, throughout my career I’ve sustained a number of concussions and during the first game of the 2021 season I suffered a severe one that took me months to recover from. The rehab didn’t go quite as well I would have hoped and many of the symptoms have lingered for quite a while now, so the decision was made to stop and give this injury proper time to heal.
Being a professional athlete has been a massive part of my identity for the past 12 years and it was a difficult situation to come to terms with but for my health it is the right one. Even though injuries are part and parcel of the sport that we participate in, I never envisaged that I’d have to stop playing at 28 because of a brain injury. I love this game and have loved the journey but the consequences of a lot of bad practices preached within the sport and admittedly many of my own mistakes have all brought me to the position I am in today, but that is a story I’ll go into another day.”
Krasniqi continued on Instagram, but it’s a sad day for the sport as another retires due to serious repercussions from a concussion problem.
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