Kiwis legend Mark Broadhurst has revealed his battle with Alzheimer's disease.
In an interview with Sydney's Daily Telegraph, the 65-year-old former prop said he "has trouble remembering stuff" and believes his condition may be connected to his league playing days and time as a professional boxer.
"I have dementia now. I've actually been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. I've had five brain scans over the last five, six weeks, and then they said I had Alzheimer's, which comes under the umbrella of dementia," Broadhurst said.
"I went and saw my neurologist 10 days ago, and he said I had Alzheimer's. I feel pretty good but I just forget what I'm doing half the bloody time.
"There's nothing you can do about it. There are a lot of people at a much younger age that are a lot worse off."
Broadhurst, who played 17 tests for the Kiwis between 1979 and 1983, said he was first "knocked out and had delayed concussion" when playing aged just 15.
The retired Christchurch freezing worker played for the Manly Sea Eagles during his 25-year league career and also had four professional fights as a heavyweight boxer.
"It's possibly got a bit to do with it because that was what it was like in those days. I think I was knocked out completely four times and the boxing didn't help," Broadhurst told the Daily Telegraph.
"Sparring was like fighting. We were knocking each other's head off – lots of shots to the head and seeing stars. But I wouldn't change anything."
During the 1981 New South Wales first grade semifinal, Broadhurst fractured his eye socket and cheekbone during an infamous brawl with Newtown Jets player Steve Bowden.
Broadhurst said he played on with two swollen, almost completely closed eyes, and even went back to the Manly Leagues Club for a few beers after the game.
"I think I ended up going to the Manly Hospital either later that night or early the next morning for the cheekbone and eye socket."
He added that the incident, which sparked an all-in brawl, "happened at the end of an era before they cleaned the game up with all the TV angles".
"I loved it. I miss that side of the game when it got cleaned up. Props would try and sort each other out.
"When you're playing prop in those games, and test matches, you go in there expecting a punch-up. It's about give and take."
Broadhurst remains a respected figure at Manly and in New Zealand, and was inducted as a New Zealand Legend of League in 2013.
The Sea Eagles and Warriors have played for the Broadhurst-Shelford trophy in recent years, named after Broadhurst and late Kiwis prop Adrian Shelford.