Israel Folau: former Australian rugby union star was considered retired before Catalans Dragons moved

Israel Folau could make his Catalan debut on Saturday against Castleford after joining the French club’s 21-player team

Israel Folau claims to have considered retirement before the Catalans of the rugby team handed him a career.

The former 30-year-old international rugby player was fired from Rugby Australia 10 months ago for posting homophobic comments on social media.

He is now ready to make his first rugby league appearance in a decade, having changed the codes to revive his career.

“Yes, of course, I thought about ending my career and doing other things,” Folau told L’Independant newspaper.

“I haven’t played for 13 to 10 years, so I’m also quite nervous. But the environment is favorable, between the staff and the players, so I can give my best.”

Folau was able to make his Super League debut on Saturday after being named to Catalans Dragons’ 21-man team to face Castleford Tigers in Perpignan.

It would be his first breakdown in the 13-player game since former Queensland State of Origin and Australia Rugby League International left NRL Brisbane Broncos for a period when he played Australian football in 2010.

“It is like a new start for me and I am very excited to be returning to the sport in which I have become known,” said Folau.

Folau moved to Catalans as a versatile player, who will be able to play anywhere, from full back to center.

He thanked French club owner and president Bernard Guasch, as well as head coach Steve McNamara, for the opportunity.

Both defended the club’s move for the player, with Guasch facing rival club’s angry bosses on the controversial move while former England chief McNamara told BBC Sport that Folau should not face the “life sentence”. to be banned from sport despite his homophobic comments.

Folau’s move to Perpignan has brought about a change in the way players are signed by British top flight clubs, with Super League teams voting unanimously for “greater authority” to stop future “controversial purchases” .

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