Adriaan Strauss announces retirement from rugby

Adriaan Strauss captained the Springboks in 2016. Clive Rose/Getty Images

Former South Africa captain Adriaan Strauss, the most capped player in the country's Super Rugby history, has announced his retirement from all forms of the game.

The 32-year-old hooker will end his 14-year professional career at the completion of the 2018 Super Rugby season, he confirmed in a statement from his Pretoria-based Bulls team on Tuesday.

"It hasn't been an easy decision but one that I've been thinking about for a while now," he said.

"I have been blessed to play the game I love, with and against some amazing people, all while building some great friendships.

"It is, however, time for me to enter into the next phase of my life and focus on a few new ventures."

Strauss has played a South African-record 156 times in Super Rugby to date, with 97 matches for the Bloemfontein-based Cheetahs.

He also won 66 test caps for the Boks, initially as an understudy to 2007 Rugby World Cup-winning captain John Smit. He made only a single start in his first four years with the national team before going on to captain the side for a single season in 2016.

He retired from international rugby in that season, but such has been his form in 2018 that there were suggestions in the South African media that he could be set for a Springboks recall.