Cameron Smith leads tributes to Paul Green after tragic death

Seen here, Paul Green during his coaching days for the North Queensland Cowboys.
Paul Green's sudden and tragic death has left the rugby league world devastated. Pic: Getty

Tributes are pouring in across the rugby league world in the wake of Paul Green's sudden and tragic death at the age of 49.

Green reportedly died at his Brisbane home on Thursday morning, with a post-mortem set to be carried out in the wake of the tragedy.

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According to the Daily Telegraph, Green had not complained about feeling ill before his death.

At this stage, a cause of death for the 49-year-old is unknown.

Green enjoyed a successful 162-game career in first grade rugby league in Australia, where he played for Cronulla, North Queensland, Sydney Roosters, Parramatta and Brisbane.

He also represented Queensland nine times in State of Origin as a player, before coaching the Maroons in 2021.

However, Green is perhaps best known for his coaching exploits with the North Queensland Cowboys, having led the club to its inaugural NRL premiership in 2015.

News of Green's sudden death on Thursday has sent shockwaves around Australia, with NRL legend Cameron Smith leading the tributes to the 49-year-old.

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

“He was a premiership coach of course with the North Queensland Cowboys in 2015.

“It’s a very sad day for all involved with the rugby league family and the rugby league community, and we send our condolences out to the entire Green family.”

Pictured left to right, Johnathan Thurston and Paul Green celebrate the Cowboys' victory in the 2015 NRL grand final.
Johnathan Thurston and Paul Green celebrate the Cowboys' victory in the 2015 NRL grand final. Pic: Getty

Veteran rugby league caller and broadcaster Ray Hadley said: “I’m just absolutely stunned, Paul Green has passed away tragically. Just terrible, absolutely terrible.”

Green's death has seen tributes pouring in across social media from NRL clubs, players, former teammates and rugby league fans who have all been left devastated by the news.

Paul Green showed no signs of ill health at recent function


Green was in charge at the Cowboys for 167 games, with the 2015 premiership coming in just his second season as head coach.

The highly respected rugby league professional had been regularly linked to a return to coaching at various NRL clubs this year after Trent Barrett and Michael Maguire were sacked by the Bulldogs and Tigers respectively.

He had also reportedly been offered an assistant coaching role under Wayne Bennett at the Dolphins for the Redcliffe-based team's inaugural season in 2023.

Green was in Sydney only last weekend for a Cronulla Sharks' ex-players’ reunion - the club where he played 95 games before moving to Townsville.

He joined the likes of Mat Rogers and David Peachey at the ‘Great White Sharks Reunion’ at Shark Park and didn't display any signs of ill health.

He is survived by wife Amanda and children Emerson and Jed.

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