RugbyU: Payne forced to retire by neck injury

Former England forward Tim Payne revealed on Thursday that he has been forced to retire on medical grounds after sustaining a neck injury towards the end of the 2012-13 season.

The 34-year-old prop played 22 times for England and also featured on the British and Irish Lions' tour of South Africa in 2009 after being called up as a replacement.

In 10 years at Wasps, he made 266 appearances and won three English Premiership titles, two European Cups and the Anglo-Welsh Cup.

"I am gutted that I have been forced to call it a day," said Payne, who plans to remain involved in the game.

"I was injured towards the end of the season and not recovering from it wasn't something I saw coming, but I accept that is the nature of the game. That doesn't, however, make it any less disappointing for me.

"I feel I have been hugely fortunate in my career to play in some great teams with great players and winning titles with Wasps is something I have immense pride in, alongside representing my country and the British and Irish Lions."

Wasps director of rugby Dai Young said: "Tim has been a superb servant to Wasps for over 10 years and he has been an important player through good times and bad for this club.

"I speak for everyone when I say we wish him all the best in the next stage of his life."