Stuart Hogg in shock retirement U-turn after ‘reset’ in rehab

Stuart Hogg in shock retirement U-turn to sign for Montpellier after 'reset' in rehab
Stuart Hogg retired before last year's World Cup - Getty Images /David Rogers

Stuart Hogg is in advanced talks over a shock move to join Montpellier in the Top 14 despite retiring from rugby last summer.

Telegraph Sport understands Montpellier are discussing bringing Hogg to France ahead of next season, with the potential move first reported in France by Midi Olympique.

Hogg, 31, has not played any rugby since Exeter Chiefs’ Champions Cup semi-final defeat against La Rochelle last year. He brought his retirement forward last summer after he was not selected for Scotland’s Rugby World Cup squad.

He reportedly discussed a possible playing return with Newcastle Falcons last month, but a move did not materialise.

The former Scotland captain and three-time British and Irish Lions tourist appeared in court at the start of last month charged with acting in an abusive manner towards his estranged wife, having been arrested outside a house in Hawick in February. Hogg pleaded not guilty and was ordered to stay away from her ahead of a trial beginning at the end of July.

Hogg posted on social media back in April to discuss his time in rehab.

“I was lost, needed help, direction, time away from the spotlight to be able to take a deep breath and think,” Hogg said. “I’ve been so concerned about what people thought of me, how I was coming across, the impact I would have on them and how I would survive the day. I lived every moment in my head and it wasn’t healthy.

“Spending time at a rehabilitation centre, allowed me to reset, learn about myself and talk about how I felt, without being judged. It’s not been easy but it was the right thing to do. Taking accountability was the first step in the right direction. I accept I have made mistakes and understand why l acted as I did.”

Montpellier have already signed Billy Vunipola ahead of next season, with the former England No 8 battling Sam Simmonds for a spot in their starting XV.

The club also controversially announced the recruitment of former France prop Mohamed Haouas, who was convicted of domestic abuse last year and had his contract with Clermont terminated before joining Biarritz.

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