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Sunday Apr 4, 2021

Mike Brown opens up on brutal nature of his departure from Harlequins

The recent announcement of Mike Brown’s departure from Harlequins at the end of this season has shocked much of the rugby world.

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The 35-year-old will join Newcastle Falcons for the 2021/22 season having made his debut for Quins back in 2005 and represented the club almost 350 times.

The former England international expressed his disappointment at not being offered a new contract for the south London club in a recent interview with the Daily Mail, stating that he had no desire to leave.

“I wanted to stay at Quins,” said Brown. “I was completely open with the club. I always wanted to stay and I wanted to finish my career at Quins. I love this club. I will always love this club, irrespective of how things have ended.

“At this stage of my career and life, it makes no sense to move but I was left with no other option. I chased the club for weeks about a new contract and, when they finally brought me in for a meeting, it lasted four minutes.

“Paul Gustard told me I had no future here and I was staring down the barrel of unemployment. I’m 35, with a family to support and I’ve been with Harlequins since I was 18. There was no ‘thanks for your effort, we’ll help you with your future’.

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“It was one of the worst feelings of my life. I couldn’t get my head around it. It wasn’t like my legs have gone and I can’t get in the team any more. Earlier that week, Gussy had done an interview on the RugbyPass website saying he wanted to reduce the age of the team. A few days later, I was gone. I never thought it would end that way.

“When you’re pushed to the side and dismissed, you feel like you’re worthless. I went straight to my car, past Scott Baldwin, who could tell I was distraught. I just sat in the car and cried.”

Brown will go down as a true legend of Harlequins and the full back earned 72 caps for England over an 11-year period. The social media reaction to his harsh treatment is below.

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