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The rugby league community is in mourning after a promising player was sadly killed in a devastating car accident.
Tributes have come flooding in for Michael Purcell, known by many as 'The Kangaroo Catcher'.
It's understood he earned that legendary nickname after chasing down the native animal during a race.
He was just 28 years of age at the time of his death.
The talented winger was signed by the NRL's reigning Premiers the Melbourne Storm.
He has also plied his trade for the Ipswich Jets and Brisbane Tigers, bagging 68 tries in 82 Intrust Super Cup games.
We are extremely saddened to hear of the passing of former Suzuki Brisbane Tigers Hostplus Cup player Michael Purcell also known as the Kangaroo Catcher 🧡🖤— Suzuki Brisbane Tigers (@EastsTigers) August 7, 2022
Purcey, 28-years young was Tigers player no. 1344 and played nine games for the Tigers across ...https://t.co/xz97Unka0k
When news broke of his tragic passing, fans and friends took to social media to share their condolences with Purcell's family.
“We are extremely saddened to hear of the passing of Michael Purcell, also known as the Kangaroo Catcher,” the Tigers tweeted.
“Thoughts and prayers are with Purcey’s family, friends, those he played with at the Tigers, Bulimba Bulldogs, Brothers, Ipswich Jets and the wider rugby league community.”
Queensland Rugby League has been rocked by the tragic death of former Ipswich Jets speedster Michael Purcell. He scored 66 tries in 71 games for the Jets and ran New York Marathon at age 18 as part of Rob de Castella’s indigenous running program. Sad news. pic.twitter.com/BBpnkzZteJ— Pete Badel (@badel_cmail) August 7, 2022
Former Jets coach Ben Walker added: “I am shattered, it’s so, so sad.
“He was a really talented kid who definitely had the ability to play NRL.
“We got a tip about this kid playing reserve grade and his nickname was the ‘Kangaroo Catcher’ because the story went he was so fast he once chased down a kangaroo during a cross-country run in the bush.
“We signed him to the Ipswich Jets and he ended up scoring 66 tries in 71 games. He had incredible speed.”
Such sad, sad news.
Rest In Peace, Michael.