Melbourne Rebels forward Gareth Delve thankful for 'best years'
Last Updated: 13/07/13 10:14am
Outgoing Rebels captain Gareth Delve has admitted he will be leave Melbourne with a heavy heart after playing his last game for the Super Rugby franchise.
The Welshman featured for the final time on Friday as the Rebels completed an astonishing 24-point comeback to beat the Highlanders in a dead rubber.
Delve, 30, was one of a number of Rebels players to take their final bow in front of a home crowd at the AAMI Park with Cooper Vuna, Ged Robinson, Nick Phipps and James O'Connor all leaving while Nic Henderson has called time on his nine-year Super Rugby career.
"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it's happened"
Following the rollercoaster of emotions, Delve admitted it is hard to imagine life away from the Rebels as he prepares to further his career elsewhere.
"We give ourselves such mountains to climb sometimes, but if we take that out of our game we will be very hard to beat next year," he told the Rebels' official website.
"There's character in this team and that shined through tonight.
"I've been trying not to think about it being my last game here all week. My sister is over from the UK, and she has been asking me all day how I've been feeling.
"I read a quote that said 'Don't cry because it's over, smile because it's happened', and that's it. This has been the best three years of my life."