An image from a Channel Nine event has sparked rumours of a big change surrounding Erin Molan's role as the female face of the network's rugby league coverage.
Molan was conspicuous by her absence at an NRL on Nine launch in Sydney, where the network unveiled its commentary team for next season.
Channel Nine reporter Danika Mason posted a snap of the launch on Instagram, with Molan's absence raising more than a few eyebrows.
The talented presenter has been brought to tears over reports NRL legend Andrew Johns refused to work with her on Nine's Friday night coverage due to a fallout between the pair.
The ugly saga has cast a shadow over the 37-year-old's future and her non-attendance at the launch event has only fuelled speculation she is set to be replaced.
Curiously, Mason was placed to the side of one of the trophies on display in the photo, opposite regular host James Bracey and next to Johns, suggesting she could be set for a more prominent role in 2020.
Molan was the only one of Nine's biggest stars missing from the event which also included Peter Sterling, Johnathan Thurston, Billy Slater, Paul Gallen, Allana Ferguson, Darren Lockyer, Ruan Sims, Sam Thaiday and Brad Fittler.
The Sunday Telegraph reported that Molan’s absence was due to family commitments in Canberra.
Johns started the 2019 season on Friday night footy alongside Molan, before disappearing midway through the year.
He was subsequently replaced by Billy Slater - which Channel Nine says was a selfless gesture from Johns to get Slater more air time.
Johns himself denied the reports, telling the Telegraph: “Where did you hear that from? Good old rugby league just thrives on rumours and innuendo.”
Emotional saga has taken its toll on Molan
The TV and 2GB radio star has endured a horrid end to the year after ending up in hospital earlier in the month after a nasty fall down a flight of stairs at her home.
She has copped some horrendous treatment from fans, leading to an outpouring of support from her colleagues.
Molan was also brought to tears in an emotional interview on WSFM in October.
She broke her silence on the Johns saga in an interview with Jonesy and Amanda, wearing sunglasses because she couldn’t wear her contact lenses due to a lack of sleep.
“I am so sorry, I haven’t put my contacts in this morning. I had a rough night. I didn’t sleep very well and these are prescriptions,” Molan said.
Brendan Jones and Amanda Keller both threw their support behind Molan - bringing the Channel Nine presenter to tears.
“I get emotional with this Erin, I don’t understand why people give you a hard time,” Keller said.
“It pisses me off. And I think it’s because you are so professional and you are so good at your job, that I think that men don’t like you being good at what they still see as their world.
“I admire the pants off you or the eyeballs off you and I just think you are the most professional female and it’s threatened everybody.”
Keller was also brought to tears after seeing Molan break down.
“Your daughter would be so proud of you. You’re breaking the glass ceiling for a generation,” Keller added.