NRL player Jarryd Hayne has refused to answer questions about rape allegations brought against him in a civil suit in the United States, and says he will let justice take its course.
The Parramatta Eels recruit fronted media this afternoon for the first time since claims surfaced that he raped a Californian woman during his time playing NFL with the San Francisco 49ers in 2015.
Police in the US initially investigated the matter but it was dropped after the district attorney concluded there was not enough evidence to proceed with a criminal case.
Hayne, who rejoined the Eels last year, stressed to journalists he just wanted to talk about football at the press conference, despite almost all questions centering on the allegations.
Hayne said he "can't describe the feeling" when he first heard about the lawsuit.
"It's just one of those things you have to go through," he said.
"You've got to go through a bit of adversity, as players we go through all sorts of things.
"We'll get through it."
He said he was obliged not to speak about the matter while legal proceedings were underway.
"We just need to let the justice system do what the justice system [is] meant to do," he said.
Through a statement from Madison Marcus Law Firm distributed after the press conference, Hayne said he will be "vigorously defending" the allegations which he "unequivocally and vehemently" denies.
Hayne has not yet been served with any formal documentation and contrary to reports, Hayne has not evaded attempts to be served, the statement read.
The Parramatta Eels recruit said the last week had been "personally distressing" for him and his family and it was hard to see them ambushed.
He also said certain media followed him on a personal pre-planned overseas trip and he was not given any notice of the proceedings before the media.
His lawyer, Mark Baute of Baute Crochetiere & Hartley LLP said in the statement that the lawsuit lacks merit.
"There is no objective evidence of any sexual assault in this matter," Mr Baute said.
Hayne thanked the support from Eels players and staff and said he has "utmost faith" in the US justice system.