Rugby league great Greg Inglis reveals he contemplated suicide at the height of his depression battle – and says racism is still a huge problem in sport
- Greg Inglis considered suicide during his mental health struggles in his career
- The 33-year-old told students at his Goanna Academy of his fight with demons
- The NRL legend hopes his story will encourage people to make a positive change
- He believes racism is prominent in Australian sport after Tyrone Peachey saga
NRL legend Greg Inglis has revealed he considered taking his own life at the height of his fight with depression.
The 33-year-old spoke of his battles with his inner demons during a presentation for his Goanna Academy in Macksville on the NSW mid north coast on Tuesday.
Inglis’ academy strives to raise awareness about mental health, with the 267-game veteran telling his class he contemplated suicide while struggling during his career.
‘I was never to that point of actually doing it but it crossed my mind for a split second. That was enough for me to actually go out and need more help,’ he told 9News.
Greg Inglis (pictured with girlfriend Alyse Caccamo) considered suicide during his mental health struggles in his career
Inglis will go down in history as one of the NRL’s most dominant players, starring for the Melbourne Storm, South Sydney Rabbitohs, Queensland and Australia in his illustrious career.
But a season-ending knee injury to his ACL in 2017 led to a downward spiral for Inglis as he plunged into a deep depression using alcohol as a coping mechanism.
In May of 2017 he reached out for help, checking himself into a rehabilitation centre, but it didn’t solve the problem.
As he sank lower he was prescribed a variety of medications for anxiety and depression, but he continued to hit the bottle.
Two years later he found himself at a low point he said he ‘needed to hit’.
Inglis spent two stints in rehab and on his second stay he was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder.
Inglis told students at his Goanna Academy of his fight with demons in his career. Pictured: Inglis takes a moment before announcing his retirement in April 2019
He retired from the game in April last year and has managed to turn his life around with the help from mood stabilising medication he was given.
Inglis hopes his story and his academy will encourage anyone struggling with their mental health to make a positive change for their future.
The Indigenous three-time premiership winner also addressed Gold Coast Titans star Tyrone Peachey was called a ‘black c***’ during a match last week.
Inglis believes the incident proves that racism is still a major issue in Australian sport.
‘It’s pretty s*** to be honest. You just think of your family, where you come from and your history. To be racially abused, it’s disheartening,’ he said.
‘I don’t know if it’s just a brain snap or just the way they’ve been raised. It’s not something you pick up, it’s something you’re taught or been around.’
Inglis is set to make his return to rugby league for the Warrington Wolves in the English Super League in 2021.
The NRL legend (pictured playing for the South Sydney Rabbitohs in 2019) hopes his story will encourage people who are struggling to make a positive change