Parramatta star Kieran Foran has left Australia for an overseas rehabilitation clinic after reportedly overdosing on prescription drugs.
Foran has been granted indefinite leave from the club and on Friday departed the country. It's been reported that the Eels captain was rushed to St Vincent's Hospital on Wednesday after taking too much medication.
The New Zealand Test star has since been released from hospital and was seen at Sydney airport on Friday.
Foran asked for privacy as he sorts through personal issues, including his break up with long-time partner Rebecca Pope.
"I thank and appreciate everyone's concerns and well wishes," Foran told Fairfax Media.
"I just need some time and privacy to sort through some personal issues. I look forward to getting back to playing footy with my teammates.
"Thank you to the Parramatta club and the fans for supporting me."
Club boss John Boulous said they would give Foran all the support he needs, but refused to divulge any reasons why the former Manly five-eighth was given time off, or for his hospitalisation.
Asked if drugs were involved, Boulous said: "I can't go into the details and I won't go into details of anything there.
"It's a private situation for Kieran. All we know is his wellbeing is first and foremost our major priority. I'm not going to say either way."
Boulous said Foran, who recently split from the mother of his two children Pope, had been struggling with personal issues "for a while", and that many of his teammates were aware of his plight.
"Kieran will take as much time as he wants and needs to get himself right. We've put no end date on that," Boulous said.
Pope's Instagram account now bills her as a "single mummy to Jordan & Emerson."
In a recent post on the social media site, she alluded to the fact the pair had split three weeks after Jordan's birth 10 weeks ago.
It was reported on Friday that Foran will miss at least three matches, including the Test match against Australia in Newcastle next Friday May 6.
The Sydney Morning Herald on Friday reported Foran suffered an adverse reaction to prescription medication earlier this week and was rushed to St Vincent's hospital.
It has also been reported the NRL's welfare department had been working with Parramatta officials to look after Foran's health and wellbeing before he was granted leave by his club.
At the time of the incident, Foran was staying with his sister in the inner-western Sydney suburb of Glebe when an ambulance was called.
An NRL legend has fired up at "online idiots" over disrespectful comments aimed at Parramatta star Kieran Foran.
The overwhelming majority of NRL supporters responded with kind words and well-wishes for the New Zealand international, but there were also a number of fans online calling for the Eels captain to "harden up" and play in Friday night's blockbuster clash against the Bulldogs at ANZ Stadium.
As the NRL community rallied around Foran during his personal leave, Penrith great Mark Geyer took aim at those fans making stupid comments on social media.
"Those people are online idiots," Geyer told Triple M's Grill Team. "No one is immune from personal issues.
"This is a real kick in the pants for anyone who thinks that rugby league players haven't got a soul. They're human beings, mate, at the end of the day."
Co-host Gus Worland said it is disappointing for the game to have fans behave irresponsibly online.
"Let's just hope that everyone does give him that space that Parramatta have asked for," Worland said.
"Kieran Foran has been an absolute saviour at Parramatta. Already people are going 'c'mon mate it's only 80 minutes of football - can't you play for us? We're paying you big money'. Those sort of people, pull your bloody heads in."
Knights great Matthew Johns said there is not one player within the game that doesn't think highly of the former Manly star.
"This fella is one of the true champions of the game, Kieran Foran," Johns said.
"He's been given indefinite leave by the Parramatta Eels. He's going through some personal matters at the moment and he's apparently not in a good way.
"We just want to wish him all the best because he is a super guy.
"I was sitting with my two boys when we heard, and I told them: 'well there you go.
There's no one tougher in rugby league, but when personal matters hit. It doesn't matter how tough you are, how strong you are, how big you are, how much money you've got. It doesn't matter'. It affects everyone.
"I imagine the Eels fans are disappointed, but they'll get behind him."
Foran's friend and former mentor Andrew Johns sent a public message to Foran on Channel 9's telecast of the Wests Tigers win over South Sydney.
"Everyone who knows Kieran loves him," Johns said. "Just get yourself right mate. Get the right treatment. Also to his partner and children: I hope they are OK."
Parramatta legend Peter Sterling said a "relationship problem seems to be at the core of the problem".
Sharks veteran Michael Ennis and former NRL premiership winner Braith Anasta were also among the members of the NRL community to pass on their well-wishes and support to Foran.
"It's a shock to everyone," Anasta told KIIS 1065 on Friday. "Obviously he's struggling a bit.
"On behalf of myself and, I suppose the rugby league community, we'd like to say that our thoughts are with him and that he has our support and if he needs anything everyone is here for him."
The Eels released a statement on Thursday night revealing Foran had been granted leave after reportedly being hospitalised to deal with personal matters following a split from his long-time partner.
It continues what has been a turbulent 2016 campaign for the Eels, who despite encouraging form on the field, have lurched from one crisis to another - the biggest being the ongoing threat of losing competition points as a result of an alleged salary cap breach.
Now the Eels have to find a new playmaker, with logical stand-in Luke Kelly unavailable after injuring his anterior cruciate ligament three weeks ago in the NSW Cup.
It's likely to leave Mitch Cornish - with just 15 games of NRL experience as an in-again, out-again half at Canberra in 2014 and 2015 - to steer the ship alongside Corey Norman for Friday night's match against Canterbury.
Foran has also been involved in legal action with former club Manly, where he is reportedly seeking to recover almost $150,000 in third-party payments.
-New.com.au with AAP