Rugby league icon Bob Fulton has died aged 73 after a long battle with cancer.
Tributes began pouring in for the footy legend when his death was confirmed on Sunday afternoon.
Close friend and veteran broadcaster Ray Hadley was rocked by the news, which he delivered live on air.
“It’s a very sad day for the Fulton family and rugby league generally,” Hadley said. “I’ve announced some sad things on radio but this could be the saddest.
“I’m going to miss him, he was a great man … the most loyal friend I’ve ever had. He’ll be sadly missed.”
Hadley’s commentary colleagues on 2GB’s Continuous Call team — where Fulton used to work — were also shattered.
“It is with a broken heart, we announce that our dear friend, immortal Bob Fulton, has died,” they posted on Twitter.
Continuous Call team member Dave Morrow fought back tears as he spoke about his great mate.
“I’m blown away because he’s been a big part of me ever since I came to Sydney in 1980 as a broadcaster,” Morrow said.
“Geez there’s some players that owe their careers to him. It is like a dagger in the heart.”
Devastating moment Brandy learns of Bozo’s death
Penrith legend turned commentator Greg Alexander was on air for Fox League when presenter Hannah Hollis told viewers of Fulton’s death.
Alexander was visibly shaken by the news, having only spoken to the footy legend recently.
“My God,” Alexander said. “I was only talking to Bozo a couple of weeks ago.
“I live in the northern beaches and … yeah … I pulled up at Woollies and was chatting with Bozo for about half-an-hour.
“That’s devastating news. Gee-whiz.”
Footy fans pay tribute
Plenty on social media were quick to pay their respects.
Channel 7 reporter Taylor Auerbach wrote: “Listening to the guys fighting back tears on @2GB873 @ContinuousCall about the death of Bob Fulton is extremely tough, moving, raw, incredible radio. RIP Bob Fulton.”
Broadcaster and NRL expert John Gibbs, who played with and worked alongside Fulton, told ABC radio the news was “very difficult to take in.”
Former NRL star Jamie Soward tweeted: “Thoughts and prayers go out to the family and everyone that knew Bob Fulton. Legend player, legend bloke.”
Journalist Steve Hart added: “In total shock Bob Fulton gone! One of the all time greats. RIP Bozo and condolences to family and friends. Sad day.”
Fulton was surrounded by family and close friends when he passed away on Sunday morning. He is survived by wife Anne, daughter Kirsty and his sons Brett and Scott.
Fulton was an outstanding player, recognised for his on-field achievements by being named an Immortal. He played 35 Tests for Australia and coached the Kangaroos from 1989-1998.
The man known as “Bozo” played more than 200 games for Manly and was synonymous with the club, coaching it for more than 300 games across two lengthy stints in the 1980s and 1990s.
In a total of 428 first grade games, he won three premierships with Manly and two with Eastern Suburbs when he made the move across in the late 1970s.
Fulton also played 17 times for NSW.
One of the godfathers of rugby league, Fulton became a trusted advisor and confidante to many within the game. He was a vital sounding board at Manly and also helped out the Blues during State of Origin campaigns
Fulton boasts the rare honour of having won premierships as a player, captain and coach.