“I might have a little run-out for Hawick next season and see how that goes,” says Stuart Hogg

Former Scotland full-back says his days as a professional player are over but the itch to get back on the pitch still needs scratched

Stuart Hogg says he fancies a run out for Hawick next season. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Stuart Hogg says he fancies a run out for Hawick next season. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

STUART HOGG has revealed that he is thinking of returning to active service on the rugby field, with the 100-cap former Scotland full-back explaining that he fancies a run-out for his home-town club.

Whilst a guest on ‘The Big Jim Show’ podcast, Hogg was put on the spot by host and former Scotland second-row Jim Hamilton, who asked the 31-year-old if he is “100 percent retired from rugby?”

Hogg, who announced that he was hanging up his boots last summer, replied: “I think I’ll play [but] I don’t think I’ll play professional. I might have a little run-out for Hawick next season and see how that goes.”

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However, Hogg stressed that his comeback ambitions do not stretch any further than playing for enjoyment, after being ground down by the daily pressure and physical demands of the pro game.

“I’m really enjoying my new life,” he said. “I still get the match-day buzz – the build-up to the game, the warm-up and stuff. I used to love it, and I’ve had that forever. We used to watch the Border Reivers play back in the day and my dad was obsessed with watching teams warm-up, so we used to be first in the crowd all the time watching teams warm-up, and I love that. You get the buzz building up to it but as soon as the whistle goes to kick-off I think: ‘Thank f*ck I’m not playing!’. The first collision you think ‘Oh god, I made the right decision!’.

“Will I play professionally again? Probably not,” he continued.

“Could I have taken a sabbatical? Maybe I could have. But I didn’t want to be in the position of going: ‘I’m going to take this period off and maybe come back’. I needed clarity that I am completely out of it. All in or all out. I couldn’t face sitting now thinking: ‘I’m going to have to continually train to be in a good shape to then come back, I’m going to have to always work on my skills’.

“So, do I do that? Or do I just pull the plug completely, and I thought … well … there wouldn’t be a club in a situation to give me a sabbatical and still pay me money.

“Could I have gone about it a different way? Potentially. But the decision now is that I am retired and I stand by that … physically and mentally I wasn’t there.”



Hogg also discussed how he has enjoyed getting fit again whilst training for the ‘All Roads Lead to Rome 2024’ cycle challenge in aid of the My Name’5 Doddie Foundation.

Rob Wainwright has been at me for a long time to get involved in some mad cycles that he continually signs up for, so I said to him just after the World Cup, after a few beers, that the next challenge he was doing I will 100 percent commit to it,” he explained. “L0 and behold the next cycle is from Oban in the west of Scotland to Rome, so I’m going ‘bloody hell, what have i done.”

“But I’ve loved been out on the bike. Because there is a team element to it with eight guys doing half an hour stints and you’ve got to average 18 miles per hour to dip it in the four and half days, I don’t want to be the one who is lagging behind and letting the team down. So I am committing fully to this and I’ve spent an absolute fortune on cycling gear to look the part!

“I went a 30-mile cycle with Rob the other week and he’s a man on a mission on that bike. He was a good half a mile ahead of me at times. But that element of getting out and being on the bike, being on my own for a little while, getting fit again, I’ve loved it and I’m properly buzzing for the cycle.

“I’ll probably hang up the cycling shorts straight away on the Saturday when we get there, but I’m looking forward to it.”

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About David Barnes 3908 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.


  1. This guy should be nowhere near tv or another rugby field if he gets convicted of the offence he has been arrested on.

  2. Hoggy’ s gan off the rails .

    Headlines on today’s Sun newspaper aren’t good reading for him .
    He needs help badly .
    He’s soon going to be known for this kind of thing rather than what he’s done in rugby

  3. He needs to train full time with the rest of the squad, and play FT if he wants to play at all; consideration must be given to all the guys who have fought for and played for Hawick these last few seasons of great sucess. As and when it suits him doesn’t cut it at full Hawick RFC level. IF he’s after occassional games and runouts he should be with the Trades, YM or whatever junior teams still exist. Mike Tindall is a great example of a wounded warrior past his best for international and professional rugby. IF his knee can’t take English premiership, is he going to get hit less hard in Scottish Premiership? Injury stpped me played top level; I did momentariily think about junior and 2nd XV level, but then realised, hey, I could get the same injury there and I’d really be in the do-dah. Needs to think carefully about exactly why he “retired” and the repurcussions. All the best to him but he needs consider his long term health

  4. Depends on which Stuart Hogg turns up at pre season training. The genuine Teri who is there to fight for his place in the team or the entitled ego for whom it is all about Stuart.

    • Depends more on how often he is available. Would Hawick want their squad to be unsettled by a player who might just be playing the odd game to polish his ego when he isn’t pursuing his other interests?

    • Hopefully recent events will allow sane people at Hawick RFC to knock this vanity project on the head.

  5. Elaine Baillie .
    Agree with Mister C .
    What gives you the right to criticize on something you really know nothing about .
    You’re entitled to your opinion .but really should keep it to yourself
    But posting this You’ve showed your true colours
    You obviously don’t like the guy.
    Really hope he plays for the Greens again .
    Just think of the buzz it would create at Mansfield

    • WOW .bloody hell .
      Does Kenny know you’ve posted this .?
      You’ve left yourself open to criticism here

    • “You’re entitled to your opinion .but really should keep it to yourself”

      Doesn’t really work on message boards like this does it? Unless of course you meant keep it to yourself if it doesn’t agree with mine.

      • AlanJ.
        She was critisizing Hoggs personal issues about his children which is none of her business .
        Something she should never have posted on here
        This is a rugby comments forum .
        Clearly has issues with the man.
        Offside line Editor didn’t like her personal comment either and took it down .
        That says it all

      • That’s fair comment Mouse. I didn’t see the original comment and it’s removal made yours liable to misinterpretation.

  6. Some utterly pathetic replies on here especially the judgemental ones. As a wise man once said, judge not lest ye be judged….

    Also this role model nonsense, Hogg, and indeed any sportsperson is not a role model for younger people they are there to perform on the sports field. The only role models kid should have is their parents, that’s their job, not some sportsperson.

  7. Great for club players to access really impressive role models, thing is……..in terms of behaviour, I can’t think of a worse role model in a position to act as one. Not just the boozing while national captain

  8. Whatever Stuart decides to do will be right. Am sure we would love to see him back in green.
    Scotland needs a vibrant game at all levels, and if Stuart’s body can hold up to it then any club in Scotland would be delighted to welcome him, no matter how good their backs were. At Hawick we have a wonderful squad , 99% Teris, and experience like Stuart’s would be invaluable for the game at large.
    There have been few greater scottish players of the game in the last 30 years, and to have Stuart in the amateur game would be fantastic for the morale of our clubs, as well as making him accessible to all of the kids who aspire to be like him.

  9. Think he may need a couple o’ games in the 2nds before he’s picked. Nice to see some of these players passing on their skills to the younger lads. Should also see a bucket load of semi pros back in Prem 1 next season. Get your cheque books ready…….

  10. Someone needs to be giving better advice to this guy , you’ll would have thought that keeping a low profile would have been a better option given the issues around “retirement “ . Not a bit of it however , he seems to have the impression that everyone is concerned with his private life and keeps on posting nonsensical messages pertaining to the public interaction with him.
    He needs to keep his head down and just get on with it , the more he says the more narcissistic he appears and his legacy will slowly but surely diminish.
    Why he would suggest he would want to play for Hawick after all he has made of his physical wellbeing is mind boggling. Let the young Hawick players have the spot and enjoy retirement with dignity.

  11. Any ex pro going back to their origin team is a great idea. Bringing the experience full circle is vital to the game in my opinion.

    My only reservation about Hogg doing it, is his off the field antics and what if any distractions that might provide to the boys. I think it’s unlikely that it would be allowed to affect the team and if it was going to be, he would simply not get a look in. But hopefully it’s something that would bring about some great opportunities for growth etc in a team that I would say, is a great place to seize that.

  12. It’s pretty common for pros in Wales to drop back to club rugby at end of pro career often helping with coaching / mentoring but not totally convinced this is same thing. Only Hawick will know if they welcome this or will see it as a distraction. Fear would be that it’s a sign of the alleged Hogg mid life crisis eg all the noise bout his hard teeth and erm off field dalliances….if he rocks up on a Harley for an ego boost it’s probably not that great a move for either party but if he’s going there to put something back to his origin club and guide young players then all good.

  13. If I’m one of the starting back 3 players at Hawick, the likes of Kirk Ford, what would I be thinking right now? Let’s be honest, Matty Douglas or whoever is in charge of Hawick next year is not going to pass up the opportunity to pick Scotland’s top tryscorer. As nice as the sentiment may be for pros to give back to the amateur game, it takes away playing time from those in the prime of their career and gives it to those who have already had one. It’s not as though Hawick are on the ropes or have a young team who could do with some experience to guide them.

  14. Think this article makes it clear which coach isn’t moving to Kelso next season then! Thoughts?
    Few ex pros at the Green machine next year.

    • the rumour mill is full swing in Hawick…. Douglas out and Hogg and Macleod in. watch this space

      • Hogg runs everything that is positive in the greens camp by all accounts anyway so very little will change if the rumours are correct. A young coach making a proper name for himself. Macleod will bring in real experience and I believe this coaching team could really bring out the best of an already talented group.

  15. Would be great for Hogg with no pressure on him.
    and great for Mansfield to have him there .
    More expros should do that and if able give something back to their home club
    Just think of the buzz about the place .
    Mind you he’ll have to justify his place first


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