Tributes flow for Sharnie Kimmorley

Sharnie and Brett Kimmorley in 2002. Picture: Getty ImagesThe rugby league community is rallying behind former NRL starBrett Kimmorleyfollowing the death of his wife Sharnie.

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Mrs Kimmorley, 38,was diagnosed with brain cancer in June last year. She died this week, surrounded by her family.

She is survived by her husband and their four daughters.

NRL clubs and players sent their condolences to the Kimmorley family as they struggle with their loss.

Michael Ennis, a former teammate of Kimmorley’s at the Bulldogs, told Fox Sports that Mrs Kimmorley had fought her illness until the “devastating” end.

Ennis said he and his wife had spent a lot of time with the Kimmorleys, and were extremely close to them.

“[Sharnie] fought ashardas she could until the end, and in the end the illnessgother,” he said.

“It’s just a real tragic time for Brett and the four young girls. We are lucky in these situations to have rugby league around us, and he [Brett] has got plenty of support in that regard, but it’s adifficulttime for everyone, especially Brett and his four girls.”

Newcastle Knights great Matthew Johns said Kimmorley – nicknamed”Noddy”throughout his 307-game playing career – was a dedicated family man.

“It’s absolutely terrible. AndNoddyis one of the great family men too. He was agreathusband to Sharnieand those four girls, it is absolutely terrible. Here we send our deepest condolences,” he said.

During his career, Kimmorley won a premiership, a Clive Churchill medal and representedNSW and Australia on numerous occasions.

Many of his former teammates and the NRL clubs he represented -including the Bulldogs, Melbourne Storm, Cronulla Sharks and Newcastle Knights – posted messages of support following news of his wife’s death.