Former Brisbane Broncos and Canberra Raiders hooker Mitch Cronin has tragically died aged 27.
He had recently been playing for the Wynnum-Manly Seagulls in the Intrust Super Cup, and led them to the Grand Final last year.
His manager confirmed the news to the Courier Mail. He was found in his parents’ backyard pool after suffering a suspected heart attack during a weights session.
“We are devastated by the passing of our captain Mitch Cronin and we send out love to Chris, Andrea, Ben, Amy and the Cronin family,” Wynnum Manly Seagulls’ chief executive Hanan Laban told the club website.
“Mitch was an exceptional young man who was loved and respected by his teammates, his coaching staff, our supporters and the wider rugby league community.
“From the moment he arrived at Wynnum he embodied the values of the Seagulls through his positive attitude, strong work ethic, and deep care for his teammates and his club.
“He was a fantastic leader who was genuine, caring and selfless with his actions.
“Mitch was a quiet achiever with a humble nature, who did not need to say too much to be held with enormous respect by his peers.
“He was fearless on the field, yet kind and modest off it – Mitch is forever in our hearts.”