Australian rugby league great Cameron Smith retires at 37

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Australian rugby league great Cameron Smith has announced his retirement

Australia's Cameron Smith, regarded as one of the greatest rugby league players of all time, announced his retirement from the sport Wednesday.

Smith, who holds the records for most points scored and most games played in the National Rugby League (NRL), announced his decision at a press conference in Melbourne.

"I was wrestling with the idea for quite some time... I knew that it was the right time to finish," the 37-year-old Smith said, citing a decision to spend more time with his family after relocating to Queensland.

"You couldn't have asked for more than finishing with a premiership for a club I've played my whole career," Smith told media outside Melbourne Storm's home ground as statues of himself and former teammate Billy Slater were unveiled.

His decision to retire ends nearly two decades at the Storm, with the majority spent captaining the side.

Although Smith was stepping off the field, Coach Craig Bellamy said he would still draw on his expertise to guide younger players.

"I have no hesitation in my opinion that he is the greatest player the game has ever seen," Craig Bellamy said.

Smith, who also led both the national squad and the Queensland State of Origin side, retired from representative competitions in 2018 but continued to play in the NRL since.

Smith debuted for the Storm in 2002 and racked up more 430 games and 2,810 points for the team.

A much-lauded goal-kicking hooker, Smith has received a long list of honours.

He was twice awarded the Golden Boot in 2007 and 2017 as best player in world rugby league and won two Dally M Medals (2006, 2017) for being the NRL's player of the year.

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