Kangaroos star James Maloney is out of Australia's Rugby League World Cup match against France in Canberra tonight due to personal reasons.
Cameron Munster is now likely to be promoted from the bench into the halves after Maloney is believed to have raced to return home to Sydney on Thursday night.
Valentine Holmes is set to be called up from the extended bench to meet France.
It is not believed to be a football issue but Cronulla star Maloney's Kangaroos departure coincided with renewed reports of a player swap with unhappy Penrith playmaker Matt Moylan.
Panthers boss Brian Fletcher told AAP on Friday that the NRL club was not in a position to comment on the latest report of a $6 million swap for Maloney.
In a deal reportedly set to be announced as early as Monday, Maloney will receive $2.5 million over three years at Penrith and Moylan will take up a four- year deal in the Shire.
Moylan's future at the foot of the mountains had been under a cloud since the Panthers skipper was granted leave to address personal issues at the start of this year's finals series.
Penrith boss Phil Gould repeatedly denied Moylan wanted out of the club despite the former NSW State of Origin star having four more years on his current deal.
Maloney's time at the Sharks has also been under constant speculation for over four months following reports the Blues representative was seeking a contract upgrade.
The 31-year-old comes off contract at the end of the 2018 season.