Irish hockey Olympian Mitch Darling announces retirement

Mitch Darling playing at the 2016 Olympics. Picture: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Mitch Darling became the fourth of the Irish hockey Olympians to formally announce his retirement from the international game after a glittering career.

The forward made his debut soon after his 18th birthday in 2006 and went on to win a European bronze medal in 2015 and line out at the 2016 Olympic Games and 2018 World Cup, earning 183 caps and scoring 51 goals.

“When I got my first cap in 2006 I could never have dreamed reaching the heights we did,” he said of his retirement.

“I am definitely privileged to have played with some of the best players to ever wear a green shirt. Being involved in such a special era holds some amazing memories and undoubtedly the biggest career defining moment was the Rio Olympics, an experience to be cherished forever.”

It means another pillar of the groundbreaking side has stepped away, following John Jermyn, Ronan Gormley and Michael Watt.

The Sandyford man began his hockey at Three Rock Rovers and Wesley College before embarking on professional seasons in Belgium and the Netherlands.

Since his return to Dublin with Three Rock, he has won two EY Champions Trophy titles and two Irish Senior Cups.

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