Jarryd Hayne has signed off on a challenging 2020 with some wonderful personal news, after announcing that he is engaged to girlfriend, Amellia Bonnici.
The former NRL star - who earlier this month faced court on two rape charges - confirmed his momentous personal news on social media.
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Hayne shared an image of himself and his partner wearing a stunning diamond ring on his Instagram page, with an accompanying bible verse to confirm his engagement.
"'He who finds a wife finds a good thing, And obtains favour from the LORD’. Proverbs 18:22 NKJV,” Hayne wrote.
"It’s been a rollercoaster. But I’m thankful for God and what the Holy Spirit has done through us.
"It’s only by the grace of God we are here and were excited moving forward as Husband n Wife,” Hayne signed off with a love heart emoji.
Hayne's post has received more than 20,000 likes in less than 24 hours, with several past and present NRL players replying to the post to congratulate the 32-year-old.
“Congrats student”, Eels fullback Clint Gutherson wrote, with Manly legend Brett Stewart adding: "Nice mate, congratulations and merry Christmas son".
Kevin Naiqama, Akuila Uate and Quade Cooper were among a list of other players to send their best wishes to Hayne.
The former Parramatta Eels, NSW and Australia star hasn't played in the NRL since 2008.
Hayne to face retrial in Sydney next year
He found out earlier in December that he will have to face a retrial in Sydney over the two rape charges against him, after a Newcastle jury failed to reach a verdict in the two-week trial.
The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions will pursue two rape charges against Hayne after his first trial in Newcastle ended in a hung jury.
The jury of eight men and four women was discharged on December 7 after a two-week trial when they failed to reach a verdict.
Judge Tim Gartelmann said if the trial went ahead in Newcastle, it was unlikely to be accommodated until late 2021 or early 2022.
The judge said the Newcastle courts' diary had been impacted by COVID-19, causing delays.
Mr Costello indicated there was a possibility the trial could be heard earlier in Sydney.
The case was briefly adjourned to allow Mr Costello and Hayne's defence lawyer Penny Musgrave to discuss their options.
Both parties returned a short time later with Ms Musgrave, who appeared via audio visual link from Sydney, telling the court she had spoken to the court listings manager who indicated Hayne's two-week trial could start in Sydney on March 8.
Mr Costello said the application to move the trial to Sydney was not opposed given it would proceed much more expeditiously than if it returned to Newcastle.
The judge listed the case for a readiness hearing in Sydney on January 29 with the trial to begin on March 8.
Hayne's bail was continued until January 29.
Hayne has pleaded not guilty to two charges of aggravated sexual assault recklessly inflicting actual bodily harm.
The offences allegedly occurred when the former Kangaroo and State of Origin star visited the woman, then aged 26, at her home on Newcastle's outskirts on September 30, 2018 - the night of the NRL grand final.
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