North Queensland Toyota Cowboys games record holder Matthew Bowen will leave the NRL club's playing ranks at the end of the 2013 season.
Preparing for his 268th NRL match this weekend, Bowen will take up an overseas playing position currently being negotiated or switch over to off-field roles with the Cowboys and NRL, working as an ambassador and with the club's community programs.
In a remarkable career, the 31-year-old has played 13 NRL seasons with his home club as well as representing Queensland, Australia and the Indigenous All Stars.
He is one of only four life members with the Cowboys and has played in all of North Queensland's finals campaigns.
Cowboys CEO Peter Jourdain said the crowd favourite's career would be celebrated in the final home game against Wests Tigers at 1300SMILES Stadium on Saturday week.
"There is no-one in the NRL who is more loved by a club's members and fans than Matthew with the Cowboys," Mr Jourdain said.
“It's been great to see him develop from being a shy 18-year-old from Hope Vale into one of the game's best players and a father of two with his long-time partner Rudie.
"We have all been lucky to be able to enjoy his talents over such a long period of time and I'm sure everyone connected with the Cowboys wishes him well with the rest of this season and whatever he chooses to do beyond 2013.
"In conjunction with the NRL, we have offered him two off-field positions which will be there when he is ready to take it up.
"In the meantime, we hope to get a huge crowd to the round 26 match - his last home game - to give Matty the send-off he deserves."
Cowboys general manager - football Peter Parr said Bowen would always be remembered as one of North Queensland's greatest players.
"Matthew is a very special player. A one-of-a-kind who we are fortunate to have had at the Cowboys for the duration of his NRL career," Mr Parr said.
"He is responsible for many of the most memorable moments this club has had and has shown incredible tenacity to play on after two very serious knee injuries.
"We would all love to see him wear our No.1 forever but unfortunately that isn't possible.
"There will always be a place for him at our club and now that will be off the field when he is ready to make that change.
"I can see him having a massive impact as a role model and mentor to young people in North Queensland, not just young footballers."