Video: Five of Stephen Ferris' career highlights
Stephen Ferris has been forced to retire at 28. Here are some of his career highlights.
1. British and Irish Lions Tour 2009
Stephen Ferris was at the peak of his powers in 2009 and was arguably the most explosive forward in Northern Hemisphere rugby.
Backboned by try-scoring outings against the Golden Lions and Free State, Ferris had nailed down a starting spot for the Lions until injury struck.
He would suffer a cruciate knee injury in training that would rule him out of the Test Series but he had made a lasting impression as a Lions tourist.
2. Ireland v Australia, 2011 Rugby World Cup
A simply brutal display of strength, aggression and intensity from the giant flanker in Ireland's historic 18-9 win over the Wallabies.
In truth it was an amazing collective display from Declan Kidney's men but the game will always be remembered for Ferris' tackle on Will Genia.
Ferris picked up the renowned scrum-half at the base of an Australian scrum and carried him back into his 22 in an incredible show of strength.
3. Heineken Cup quarter-final victory over Munster at Thomond in 2012
Ferris produced one of his best ever displays for his province in the home of Munster rugby to inspire his team mates to a 22-16 win.
He has been a doubt before the game with an ankle knock but played through the pain barrier in a performance which personified the courage of the man.
4. Ferris returns from injury with monstrous tackle
The big man tweeted that he never had felt a buzz like it after he received a rousing reception in March following his return from 16 months of rehabilitation from an ankle injury in the Pro12 game with the Scarlets.
His first involvement in the game was a massive tackle on Scarlets back Kristian Phillips which drove the Welshman back 20 metres.
Paddy Jackson scored two tries, with the other two scored by Tommy Bowe and Tom Court in a 26-13 win.
5. Grand slam triumph in 2009
Stephen Ferris was an ever-present in Ireland's amazing run to Grand Slam success in 2009.
The Portadown flanker formed an amazing back-row partnership with David Wallance and Jamie Heaslip as Ireland ended a 61-year wait for a Grand Slam.