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How Paul Green died: Police speak out about cause of death

The sudden death of legendary NRL figure Paul Green, 49, at his home Thursday is ‘not suspicious’ – with a post-mortem kit to determine the exact cause.

Queensland Police were called to Green’s family’s home in Wynnum, east Brisbane, just after 10 a.m. Thursday morning after he failed to respond in his garage.

A police spokeswoman told Daily Mail Australia that Green was pronounced dead at the scene by paramedics a short time later.

“There are no suspicious circumstances,” she said.

Those close to the ex-Cronulla Sharks star are devastated, saying there was no outward indication that he was suffering from any physical or mental illness.

He leaves behind his wife Amanda and two children – Jed and Emerson.

Green was a star as a player and coach, earning one of the game's highest honors when he won the Rothmans Medal in 1995

Green was a star as a player and coach, earning one of the game’s highest honors when he won the Rothmans Medal in 1995

Green was only in his second year coaching the North Queensland Cowboys when he led them to their only premiership in 2015

Green was only in his second year coaching the North Queensland Cowboys when he led them to their only premiership in 2015

Green was only in his second year coaching the North Queensland Cowboys when he led them to their only premiership in 2015

The death of the former halfback – who won one of the highest honors in the sport as a player when he received the Rothmans Medal in 1995 – has left the football world in shock and mourning.

Tributes have already been poured in from rugby greats with Cameron Smith – considered by many to be one of the greatest NRL players of all time – expressing his shock.

“It’s very sad news,” Smith said on SEN 1170 The Captain’s Run.

“It is a very sad day for all involved in the rugby league family and the rugby league community, and we extend our condolences to the entire Green family.”

Green retired as coach of the Cowboys in 2020, but was still highly regarded in the league and would become Wayne Bennett’s assistant with the Dolphins next year.

He was in Sydney this past weekend for a reunion of the Cronulla Sharks, the team for which he starred as halfback from 1994 to 1998, leading them to the 1997 Super League grand final.

Green played for the Cowboys, Roosters and Eels in a first-class career that lasted 10 years and ended in 2004, netting 162 games with 37 tries to his name.

Queensland Police were called to Green's family's home in Wynnum, east Brisbane, just after 10am on Thursday after he failed to respond in his garage (pictured)

Queensland Police were called to Green's family's home in Wynnum, east Brisbane, just after 10am on Thursday after he failed to respond in his garage (pictured)

Queensland Police were called to Green’s family’s home in Wynnum, east Brisbane, just after 10am on Thursday after he failed to respond in his garage (pictured)

Green leaves behind his wife Amanda (pictured together at the 2017 Dally M Awards) and his children Jed and Emerson

Green leaves behind his wife Amanda (pictured together at the 2017 Dally M Awards) and his children Jed and Emerson

Green leaves behind his wife Amanda (pictured together at the 2017 Dally M Awards) and his children Jed and Emerson

In his last public appearance, just days before his death, Green joined dozens of iconic Sharks stars for a lap of honor at PointsBet Stadium.

He appeared in good spirits during Saturday night’s match against arch-rival St George Illawarra for Old Boys Day – and gave a short interview.

“It’s great to be back,” Green told Sharks ground announcer Dane Wheeler.

“It’s a great night, great crowd and the weather is good for Shark Park so let’s hope the footy is great.

“I’ve had a lot of good memories and it’s great to catch up with all the old guys today, there’s been a lot of laughs and it’s been really well done by the club.”

The small half played seven State of Origin games for Queensland from 1998 to 2001 and played two games for the Australian Super League team in 1997.

Paul Green's last public appearance came just days before his shock death - speaking of his 'good memories' while attending an NRL game with former teammates on Saturday

Paul Green's last public appearance came just days before his shock death - speaking of his 'good memories' while attending an NRL game with former teammates on Saturday

Paul Green’s last public appearance came just days before his shock death – speaking of his ‘good memories’ while attending an NRL game with former teammates on Saturday

His stellar coaching career began with the Cowboys in 2014 and the following year he led the club to their only premiership, a thrilling 17-16 win over the Brisbane Broncos in extra time.

Green coached Queensland’s State of Origin team for one series in 2021. When he resigned from that job last September, it seemed certain that he would resume his days as NRL coach.

He was linked to the Wests Tigers late last season and would join the Dolphins next year.

Green’s death will hit the NRL hard.

In addition to those who still play in North Queensland, he has coached several players who started their careers in Townsville or played for the Maroons last year.

The halfback won the Rothmans Medal in 1995 when he played for Cronulla (pictured) - the team he helped to the Super League grand final in 1997

The halfback won the Rothmans Medal in 1995 when he played for Cronulla (pictured) - the team he helped to the Super League grand final in 1997

The halfback won the Rothmans Medal in 1995 when he played for Cronulla (pictured) – the team he helped to the Super League grand final in 1997

Green embraces Queensland halfback Daly Cherry-Evans after the Maroons won game three of last year's State of Origin series - his last game as coach

Green embraces Queensland halfback Daly Cherry-Evans after the Maroons won game three of last year's State of Origin series - his last game as coach

Green embraces Queensland halfback Daly Cherry-Evans after the Maroons won game three of last year’s State of Origin series – his last game as coach

On Thursday night alone, Cameron Munster, Xavier Coates and Viliame Kikau were on the field just hours after learning of their former coach’s death.

Green was in Sydney this past weekend for the ex-players’ reunion from Cronulla, a club where he played 95 games before moving north to the Cowboys.

He was also part of the Sydney Roosters’ 2002 premiership winning squad, before finishing his playing days at Parramatta and Brisbane.

For confidential crisis support, call Lifeline on 13 11 14

Paul Green’s Career in Rugby League

PLAYER

  • 162 first class games played
  • Moved from Brisbane to Cronulla in 1994, played 95 games for the Sharks
  • Joined the Cowboys in 1999, made 35 appearances
  • Signed to the Roosters where he played 20 games from 2001-2002
  • Joined Parramatta in 2003 and played seven games
  • Ended his career with the Broncos with five games
  • Represented Queensland in seven Origin games
  • Represented Australia and Queensland in the Super League in the late 1990s

COACH

  • Head coach of the North Queensland Cowboys for 167 games (2014-2020), winning a premiership in 2015
  • Queensland Head Coach in 2021 State of Origin Series

“We are deeply saddened by the tragic passing of Queenslander and former Bronco, Paul Green,” the Broncos tweeted.

“A legend on and off the pitch is gone way too soon.”

His passing is another shocking loss to the Australian sports community following the deaths of Australian cricket legends Rod Marsh, Shane Warne and Andrew Symonds – a close friend of Green’s – earlier this year.

For help in a crisis, call 000. If you or someone you know needs support, call Lifeline 131 114 or Beyond Blue 1300 224 636.

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