BREAKING | Billy Slater confirms retirement from Rugby League at end of season

Melbourne Storm superstar and Queensland legend Billy Slater has confirmed he will retire from Rugby League at the end of the season.

The 35-year-old made the announcement at a special press conference in Melbourne on Wednesday afternoon.

“For 16 years I’ve had the pleasure to play in the NRL. However this will be my last as I’ll be retiring at season’s end,” an emotional Slater said.


“I feel so very lucky to have the career I have had. 18 years ago I made the decision to pack my car up and chase my dream. I’ve always felt extremely grateful and loyal to this club.”

Slater has played 313 games for Melbourne Storm, represented Australia in 30 Tests and played for Queensland 31 times.

The champion fullback says he will “forever be in debt” to the game of Rugby League.

“This game has given me everything, I am forever in debt to it. It gave me heroes as a boy and a chance to be one myself. It’s given me friendships and I feel forever in debt to our game.”

Slater fought back tears as he thanked his family, fellow team mates and coach for all of their support.

“To Craig Bellamy, thanks for believing in me. Your support, guidance and care has been instrumental,” Slater said.

“You taught me the harder you work the luckier you get. I have no doubt my career wouldn’t have been successful or consistent if you didn’t instil that into me.

“To Cameron Smith and Cooper Cronk, not only have you both created opportunities for me on the field, but when your peers drive themselves to be the best and continually succeed, that’s infectious. This is why you two have had the greatest influence on my career.

“To my family, starting with my mum, dad and sister, thank you for all your support through my football life.

“To my wife Nicole, haven’t we enjoyed some great moments? But it’s the tough times that I’ve needed you the most. You’ve given me unconditional love and support.”