Sydney Swans captain Kieren Jack gave away club-issued box tickets and airfares for his milestone 200th AFL match to the parents of his model girlfriend instead of his own.
The 29-year-old was then publicly shamed by his mother Donna who claimed on Twitter he had banned her from attending the landmark clash against Geelong on Friday.
Jack's father Garry, a rugby league legend, told The Daily Telegraph the decision to hand over the tickets to the parents of his girlfriend-of-three years, Charlotte Goodlet, had devastated the family.
'We have been aware of the problem but it has fallen on deaf ears. They are your kids and they can do what they want but, as parents, it hurts,' he said.
'It hurts us as a family, it cuts to your heart, it really does.'
The messy family row centres around the sportsman's relationship with Ms Goodlet - a Channel Nine producer and former Miss Universe Australia contestant who lives with Jack.
Donna and Garry Jack are both said to disapprove of the long-term romance, which has sparked a bitter rift that has split the family of five and lasted the past twelve months.
But the private falling-out was made public when Mrs Jack revealed the Swans star had requested she and husband Garry not attend the game against Geelong Cats at Simonds Stadium.
'So sad... you 200 AFL & you don't want us there, your parents. No appreciation for all the yrs (sic) helping you get there,' she publicly tweeted late on Sunday night.
Her husband said he was completely behind his wife's outburst, tweeting on Monday morning: 'I support my wife's comments and we are a family.'
Kieren's younger brother Brandon, who also plays for the club, also reportedly asked his father to leave their changing rooms at a reserves march earlier this year.
At a low-key birthday celebration for his older sibling last week he described him and his girlfriend as 'the most loving people I know'.
Their other brother Rhys was not in the photograph.
He took to social media on Monday to stand up for his parents, writing: 'I love and support my Mum and Dad to the end of the earth, 2 more genuine people you will not find. For me FAMILY is the number one priority.'
Another tweet by Mrs Jack in June again alluded to not being able to attend her son's games.
'Wish we could be there you have come a long way from the days out the front kicking with Dad good luck,' she tweeted, while sharing a photo of Kieren holding an AFL trophy.
Miss Goodlet would not comment on the matter on Sunday night.
Swans too would not be drawn on details of the rift, instead describing it as a 'private family matter.'
Earlier this year Mrs Jack posted a scathing message aimed at her son, writing: 'Isn't it time as Captain you practised what you preach.
'Family is what gets you there, done ever forget that' (sic).
It is a far cry from the photos of happiness showing Jack grinning alongside his father, Garry, when he had just been drafted onto the Sydney Swans rookie list in 2005.
More than a decade later an illustrious career catapulted Jack to leadership of the Sydney side, and left him with a handful of accolades including a premiership title in 2012 and a club champion award.
The sportsman regularly spends the weekend with his girlfriend's family, posing for social media photographs at restaurants around Sydney with her parents.
He and his brother are also understood to have spent Christmas with Miss Goodlet's relatives rather than his own.
Garry Jack is a rugby league great, playing more than 200 games for the Balmain Tigers. He also represented NSW in State Of Origin and played for Australia