Former NSW State of Origin star turned media identity Brett Finch has checked in to a mental health facility after suffering a medical incident on board a flight to Sydney.
Finch, who played for over a decade in the NRL with Sydney Roosters, Canberra, Parramatta and Melbourne, was taken from a plane that was flying from the Gold Coast on Sunday and put into an ambulance, according to a report in the Daily Telegraph.
A passenger told the newspaper Finch "looked like he couldn't bring himself to get off the plane. White as a ghost, couldn't control his runny nose and (appeared) paranoid.”
"He wasn't abusive. He just didn't want to get off the plane, like he was scared about something.
"The captain came out ... they had to call fireys and ambulance to get him off."
Another source said that the sight of Finch struggling with his breathing was "pretty confronting” and "sad".
Several sources confirmed the former State of Origin star checked in to a facility to start work on his health.
Finch’s struggles with life after footy
Earlier this year Finch opened up about his struggles to cope with life after retirement.
“I thought I was prepared for retirement, but I wasn’t," he told The Matty Johns Podcast.
"One day I was a football player, the next day no one cares. It’s over. I struggled to get any satisfaction in life.
“You train to extreme levels, you’re super fit and super strong. I thought I was a mentally tough bloke. I was trying to get some highs in my life.
“Someone I was seeing professionally told me to go down to Bondi Beach and watch the sunrise. So I did that and I thought, ‘Is this is it? Who gives a shit. This is nothing like playing a grand final.”
Finch said he isolated himself for six months before getting clinical help.
"I had to realise I’m not going to get the highs I had in footy, and for so long I was chasing that," he said.
“The biggest thing was that I hit rock bottom ... Financially, at work. I was a super reliable, hard-working player [but I didn't have that in retirement].”
With Yahoo Sports staff