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Ethan Lowe retires: Rabbitohs forward hangs up boots at 29

Former Maroons forward Ethan Lowe, whose career has been hampered by neck injuries, has retired at the age of 29.

In his post-match media conference after South Sydney's preliminary final los to the Panthers on Saturday night, coach Wayne Bennett said Lowe would not be returning next year.

The Rabbitohs forward has been sidelined since the round-10 loss to Newcastle when he aggravated an old neck injury during the match. Lowe had undergone surgery for a neck problem in 2016 and went under the knife again this year.

He made his NRL debut in 2013 and played 143 matches, the first 108 with the Cowboys before switching to Souths at the start of last year. Lowe had not missed a game over the first half of the regular season this year before hurting his neck again in the clash with the Knights.

Lowe started in the second row for North Queensland in their 2015 grand final win over Brisbane.

The goal-kicking forward broke into the Queensland team last year and played strongly in the game-three loss to NSW.