Prince Charles retires (from polo, that is)

Last updated at 11:11 17 November 2005

The Prince of Wales is to stop playing polo, Clarence House has announced today.

The heir to the throne, who has enjoyed the game for more than 40 years, is said to have felt the time was right to retire.

A spokesman for the Prince said he made the decision recently.

"The Prince of Wales will not be playing polo next season. He made the decision recently to retire from the game after playing for over 40 years," he said.

Charles turned 57 on Monday.

The spokesman said: "He felt that the time was right. He decided to bow out gracefully, but regretfully."

The Prince has played only in charity matches since 1992, but prior to that he played competitively in teams across the world.

He is estimated to have raised more than £12million throughout that time through his polo playing.

Last season the Prince raised around £900,000.

Clarence House insisted that Princes William and Harry would continue to play the sport as much as their military careers allowed.

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