Billy Vunipola warned over Israel Folau support

Israel Folau's religious faith remains strong as his rugby career hangs in the balance

Folau has until 5pm on Wednesday (NZ time) to respond to RA's notice - either accepting the sanction or have the matter referred to a Code of Conduct hearing.

"Following the events of past year, Israel was warned formally and repeatedly about the expectations of him as player for the Wallabies and NSW Waratahs with regards to social media use and he has failed to meet those obligations", Castle said.

The New Zealand Catholic Church has spoken out against controversial rugby star Israel Folau saying he has done a disservice to the church following his comments against homosexuals.

Rugby Australia set to terminate Israel Folau's contract.

On Saturday a spokesperson said: "These views are incompatible with our values as an inclusive broadcaster and in light of this Billy Vunipola won't be used as a contributor in Channel 4's rugby coverage". Everyone that's out there supporting us.

"It's probably given all parties a bit of clarity about what's going to happen and then we can adjust from there".

'When you play in the gold jersey, you represent everyone in Australia.

"I felt that I needed to talk to him about why, and I haven't had that chance as yet".

Folau, who rose to prominence with the Melbourne Storm in 2007, last played league with the Broncos in 2010.

"You take your friends warts and all, and your teammates", Hooper said.

Asked if he would be comfortable taking the field again alongside Folau, flanker Hooper said "In this current state and being here and talking about this as a rugby player, it makes it hard, it makes it difficult".

Gibson expressed disappointment that the issue of Folau's religious views had arisen again.

Yesterday Luke Fenton, president of the Edinburgh-based Thebans, who were formed in 2002, said the club were moved by Hastings' intervention and said: "It shows that rugby is a sport that keeps itself in check from the top and makes us feel protected".

"It's obviously a decision that's in the process right now but I believe in a God that's in control of all things", Folau told the Sydney Morning Herald.

Folau said on Sunday he would stand by his comments, even if that meant giving up rugby.

"His plans for me are better than whatever I can think. If that's not to continue on playing, so be it", he said. One speaker praised Folau for his "boldness" for adhering to God's word.

"It's frustrating having to stand here because I can't speak for Israel, but it is part of the team celebrating our diversity and celebrating that in a respectful manner".

The England No 8 simultaneously issued a statement, saying: 'I can see that my recent post has hurt people.

Folau indicated he was unlikely to legally challenge his termination, though some legal experts believe he would have a strongcase if he asserted his right to freely express his beliefs.

However, this is not the first time Folau has found himself in hot water over his social media usage. "None of us knows what goes on in the heart of every single person and what is behind what they are and what they do".



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