Wallabies captain Moore set to retire from international rugby

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Wallabies captain Stephen Moore will retire from international rugby at the end of the year, though he will play for Super Rugby outfit Queensland Reds in 2018.

The upcoming Rugby Championship and November's Spring Tour will be Moore's final contributions to the Wallabies, it was announced on Thursday.

A veteran of 120 Tests - second only to George Gregan (139) after making his debut in June 2005 - Moore, 34, will also relinquish the captaincy immediately.

"I've been very lucky to have played as long as I have, and I'm incredibly grateful to the Wallabies and Australian Rugby for all its done for me. I also really want to thank all my team-mates, coaches and staff I've had over my career," said Moore, who skippered Australia to the 2015 Rugby World Cup final.

"There's still plenty of footy to go this year but I know the Wallabies will be left in very strong hands if we continue to work hard and stay grounded.

"As of the next Test I will be handing over the captaincy, and will spend the next four months supporting the new leadership team in any way possible. 

"We have a great bunch of developing leaders like Michael [Hooper], Adam [Coleman], Bernard [Foley], Samu [Kerevi], Allan [Alaalatoa]. Succession is a really important part of the leadership of any team and we've been working to that end for a number of years and having those discussions for some time. 

"I look around the group now and I see plenty of faces that weren't even in high school when I made my Wallabies debut, and that is exciting for Australian rugby."

Wallabies head coach Michael Cheika added: "Stephen still has a big role to play within the team. This isn't a farewell right now - he's fully committed to getting the gold jersey back to the top this year.

"His contribution to this current team cannot be understated. What he's achieved on the field is no mean feat but it's his work off the field in his role as captain of Australia that has really impressed me.

"We now have to make sure we send him off in the best way possible this year."

Australia get their Rugby Championship underway against trans-Tasman rivals and world champions the All Blacks on August 19.

The Wallabies are also set to face South Africa and Argentina.