The best mate of Paul Green has revealed their devastating final conversation, with the legendary coaching texting him just days earlier saying: ‘we need to catch up’.
The death of the legendary figure, who coached the North Cowboys to its maiden premiership in 2016, has thrown the footy world into shock and mourning.
A post-mortem will be carried out to determine his cause of death.Those close to the ex-Cronulla star are devastated and say there was no indication he was ill.
Former Cowboys chairman Laurence Lancini said he is a ‘broken man’ after hearing that his ‘lifelong friend’ had died, revealing the 49-year-old had been messaging him to meet up just three days earlier.
‘This is so, so sad.I am a broken man. I cannot believe this has happened,’ Lancini told News Corp.
‘I had spoken to Paul just three days ago and he said we need to catch up for a beer.’
Laurence Lancini (pictured with Paul Green), the legendary coach’s best mate, has revealed their devastating final conversation, with the legendary coaching texting him just days earlier saying: ‘we need to catch up’
Green leaves behind his wife Amanda (pictured together at the 2017 Dally M Awards) and his children Jed and Emerson
Lancini, who worked in various leadership roles at the Cowboys over a distinguished 20-year career, said he had known ‘Greeny’ his entire life but admitted he had become ‘lost’ since leaving coaching.
‘Greeny mentioned he was keen to coach again and had some options, and I asked Greeny if he really wanted to go back into it again,’ Lancini revealed.
‘Greeny has come from a position where he coached a club to a premiership and a second grand final.He has coached State of Origin. He has coached at the highest levels, and I think Greeny was a bit lost and confused about where his life needed to be without coaching.
‘The last few years have been a bit tough on him because he hasn’t been coaching in the NRL.’
The former North Queensland boss said he was ‘totally devastated `by his death and divulged it came just a day after son Jed’s 9th birthday.
‘I didn’t see his death coming,’ he said.’He will always be a champion in our hearts. He will always be so important for our Cowboys club.
‘I just feel totally devastated. I believe it was his son Jed’s birthday yesterday.’
Lancini (pictured with Green) said he had known ‘Greeny’ his entire life but admitted he had become ‘lost’ since leaving coaching
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.
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The 49-year-old joined dozens of iconic Sharks stars doing a lap of honour around PointsBet Stadium before their match against arch-rivals St George Illawarra for Old Boys Day Saturday night – appearing in good spirits during a short interview.
‘It’s great to be back,’ Green told Sharks ground announcer Dane Wheeler.
‘It’s a terrific night, great crowd and the weather is good for Shark Park, so let’s hope the footy is great.
‘I’ve had plenty of good memories, and it’s great to catch up with all the old boys today.It’s been a ton of laughs and really well done by the club.’