Adding somewhat to the sense of crisis around the Brumbies the SMH has word that the Brumbies inspirational captain will head off into the sunset at the end of this season:
Wallabies and ACT Brumbies captain Ben Mowen will quit Australian rugby on Thursday, deciding to put family before his World Cup dream and move his career to Europe at the end of 2014.
In a move which will shock Australian rugby and the Brumbies, Fairfax Media can reveal Mowen, 29, says an intense travel schedule and missing time with daughter Eleanor convinced him it was time to put family first.
One last season of “throw it to Ben” then.
UPDATE: The Brumbies have now made a statement:
After three Super Rugby campaigns as skipper of the University of Canberra Brumbies, 2014 will be Ben Mowen’s final season with the ACT-based club after the 29 year old announced he will move to France.
The current Wallabies and UC Brumbies Captain has recently started a young family and with the high travel demands of a player of his standing he felt this was the best time to stand aside.
Arriving from the Waratahs at the end of 2011, Mowen quickly set about becoming a major contributor to the UC Brumbies team culture and standards.
Heading into the 2014 Super Rugby season Mowen sits fourth on the list of most-capped UC Brumbies captains on 33 and at a national level was named the Wallabies 80th skipper in 2013, in Perth against Argentina.
Mowen was named the UC Brumbies Best Forward in 2013 and is widely regarded as one of Australia’s best loose forwards. Over the last two seasons Mowen has developed into a captain who puts everything into game day, pays attention to detail for preparation and recovery and consistently makes the right decisions under pressure.
Mowen said it was a difficult decision to make but felt the club was well equipped to move forward.