SYDNEY (AP) — ACT Brumbies coach Stephen Larkham says 24-test Wallaby back Pat McCabe has been forced to retire from rugby because of a neck injury suffered in last weekend's 52-10 Bledisloe Cup loss to New Zealand.

However, the Brumbies played down their head coach's comments, sending out a clarification later Wednesday on Twitter to say "contrary to reports Pat McCabe has not yet retired. Pat has a meeting with (Wallabies doctor) Warren McDonald ... statement coming Thursday, not before."

Larkham said the 26-year-old McCabe had taken medical advice to quit after fracturing his neck in the Auckland match, the third time in his 24-test career he has suffered a serious neck injury.

Larkham says "Pat has made the decision he's not going to play again... the neck should heal up fine."