The Kiwi-born whistle-blower, who found a home in Australia, is leaving to pursue business interests outside rugby.
“I have lived my dream and I am truly grateful for every experience that I have had in rugby. It’s been an incredible journey,” said the veteran of four Rugby World Cups.
“I would be doing all of the key stakeholders in the game – from officials to the players to the fans – an injustice if I was unable to 100 per cent channel my energies and devote my full attention towards refereeing Super Rugby and Test Matches.
“I would not want my new focus to impact the integrity of the competitions I am involved in.
In a career scattered with on and off-field controversies, on his day Walsh was one of the best referees going around.
But that’s not very interesting, so here’s collection of some of his shockers.
Steve v Stephen...
Giving Conrad Smith a shove
Saying sh*t during a Test match
Unfortunately we couldn’t find footage of the 2001 Canterbury v Wellington Ranfurly Shield clash that is widely regarded as Walsh’s worst moment. He earned the undying hatred of Wellington fans when he penalised their side 21 times and sin-binned two of their players in a 31-29 loss.
Legendary Kiwi broadcaster Keith Quinn called it a “concerto for whistle and orchestra.”
Wellingtonians just call it ‘The Steve Walsh Match.’