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Panthers confirm Kingston to retire

Penrith veteran Kevin Kingston will retire at the end of this NRL season.
Panthers confirm Kingston to retire
by AAP

SYDNEY, June 6 AAP - Penrith veteran Kevin Kingston will retire at the end of this NRL season.

The Panthers co-captain last month indicated a desire to play on in 2015, but on Friday Penrith coach Ivan Cleary confirmed this season would be Kingston's last.

The club has signed promising South Sydney hooker Apisai Koroisau to partner current starting No.9 James Segeyaro in the crucial dummy-half role next year and there was no room for Kingston.

Parramatta are currently experiencing a hooker crisis after Nathan Peats ruptured his knee and was ruled out for the season.

Speculation suggested the Eels might try to entice Kingston, a former Parramatta grand final player, to jump ship before June 30.

However, that suggestion would appear dead in the water, with Cleary confirming ultimate club man Kingston would transition into an off-field role with the Panthers from next year.

"Kevvy will be finishing off this year playing, he's going to be a big part of our club into the future which we are all very happy with," Cleary said on Friday.

"In all my time I don't think I've seen a better clubman than Kevvy Kingston, but he still has a lot to do, this year as well. He's still playing good football and he's just got to come back from the ankle injury that he's had. There's a long way to go for Kevvy yet."

Kingston has missed a couple of weeks and isn't expected back for Saturday's clash with Gold Coast.

However, the 31-year-old could have a tough time forcing his way back into the starting side, with Segeyaro firing in the high-flying Panthers' past two wins.


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