Israel Folau feeling ‘positive’: Michael Hooper

By Darren Walton, Darren Walton is a Roar Guru

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    NSW Waratahs and Wallabies captain Michael Hooper says embattled teammate Israel Folau is in a positive headspace despite being engulfed in a storm of controversy.

    An injured Folau hasn’t played since making a series of provocative posts about gay people that led to the superstar code-hopper being hauled in for a meeting this week with Rugby Australia boss Raelene Castle and Waratahs chief Andrew Hore.

    The devout Christian was asked to consider the impact of any anti-gay posts might have after his public stance upset some of RA’s biggest sponsors, including Qantas and ASICS.

    But he is refusing to back down, on Thursday night posting another comment on Instagram confirming his strong religious beliefs.

    “Stand with God no matter what. Don’t be afraid to stand up for the truth, even if it means that you will be standing alone,” the post said.

    While Folau has received support from Waratahs and Wallabies teammate Curtis Rona, who posted “We stand with #IsraelFolau” on his Instagram account, Hooper said he hadn’t directly addressed the issue with the three-times John Eales Medallist.

    “I’ve spoken to Izzy in a training capacity, pretty briefly. He’s been in getting his hammy right, which is coming along really well,” Hooper said on Friday.

    “But, other than that, boys have checked in to see if he’s OK and he’s positive.

    “His hammy’s getting better and he’s looking to get back on the field soon.”

    Folau is due back in three weeks after tearing his hamstring in the Waratahs’ win over the Brumbies a fortnight ago.

    © AAP 2018
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    The Crowd Says (32)

    • Roar Rookie

      April 13th 2018 @ 2:07pm
      piru said | April 13th 2018 @ 2:07pm | ! Report

      I wonder what league club he’ll end up at

      • April 13th 2018 @ 3:00pm
        Mike Julz said | April 13th 2018 @ 3:00pm | ! Report

        There’s a good chance he’ll play for the Warriors, if he does switch. To be closer with his wife of course. And RTS is moving clubs I think.

        • Roar Guru

          April 15th 2018 @ 11:16am
          rebel said | April 15th 2018 @ 11:16am | ! Report

          RTS just signed a 4 year contract extention.

      • April 13th 2018 @ 5:45pm
        Malo said | April 13th 2018 @ 5:45pm | ! Report

        Warriors or parramatta

        • April 14th 2018 @ 10:18am
          Crash Ball2 said | April 14th 2018 @ 10:18am | ! Report

          As a lifelong Eels fan I can say that while Issy in blue and gold would be a mighty coup, for Falou it would be a career killer. Parra is where good talent goes to die.

      • April 14th 2018 @ 1:20pm
        Fionn said | April 14th 2018 @ 1:20pm | ! Report

        Piru, this made me spit my coffee everywhere!

        • Roar Rookie

          April 16th 2018 @ 10:55am
          piru said | April 16th 2018 @ 10:55am | ! Report

          Fionn, I assumed it was going to be a case of :

          “Issy stop that”

          “Yep ok”

          But he’s decided he’s going to keep at it – they can’t keep him on if so

          • April 16th 2018 @ 10:59am
            Fionn said | April 16th 2018 @ 10:59am | ! Report

            Piru, I’m feeling the same way.

            Certainly, he cannot remain the highest paid rugby player in the country, and RAs poster boy after the way that this has played out.

    • April 13th 2018 @ 2:59pm
      Taylorman said | April 13th 2018 @ 2:59pm | ! Report

      Well hes had time think about it all, good luck to him.

    • April 13th 2018 @ 3:03pm
      Mike Julz said | April 13th 2018 @ 3:03pm | ! Report

      Another day, another Israel Folau article. I wonder what’s the headline for tomorrow, -“Trump tweets about Folaus comments”…

    • April 14th 2018 @ 8:13am
      Misha said | April 14th 2018 @ 8:13am | ! Report

      Can Folau ever be refereed by Nigel Owens now? Without bias/prejudice??

      • April 14th 2018 @ 9:05am
        tyrone said | April 14th 2018 @ 9:05am | ! Report

        yes, just as other openly hetero players can be.

      • April 14th 2018 @ 10:53am
        Rugby Tragic Too said | April 14th 2018 @ 10:53am | ! Report

        so nigel owens can’t referee devout christians…

        you know they all believe what folau said.

        at the end of the day it sjust a theological belief that doesn’t hurt anyone that has a normal amount of resilience.

        • April 14th 2018 @ 11:08am
          aussikiwi said | April 14th 2018 @ 11:08am | ! Report

          Simply not true that all devout Christians believe “unrepentant” gays will go to hell. It is a few particular strands of christianity which hold on to that archaic belief.

          Young people struggling with their sexuality, particularly if they have been brought up as christians, will most likely not have “normal” resilience when told by a sporting superstar that if they are true to themselves they will go to hell.

          As Nigel Owens and others with direct experience have rightly pointed out, such ill thought out comments can be extremely damaging.

          • April 14th 2018 @ 4:09pm
            Rugby Tragic Too said | April 14th 2018 @ 4:09pm | ! Report

            they have to

            its written in black and white

            if they don’t believe that they are not devout

            is all nonsense anyway, anyone that doesn’t believe it, doesn’t believe it…. anyone that does believe it, believes it.

            so whats the problem exactly?

            • April 15th 2018 @ 9:35am
              Fionn said | April 15th 2018 @ 9:35am | ! Report

              You don’t understand much about religion, do you?

              You’re seriously telling all Christians what they have to believe?

              • April 15th 2018 @ 2:54pm
                Rugby Tragic Too said | April 15th 2018 @ 2:54pm | ! Report

                if they wish to call themselves devout, yes, there is only one thing they can believe, because its written in their religious text.

              • April 15th 2018 @ 3:00pm
                Fionn said | April 15th 2018 @ 3:00pm | ! Report

                No, Rugby Tragic Too, it is not up to you to decide what a ‘devout’ Christian believes.

                I get the impression you’re not a Christian yourself? Do you know much about the religion?

                Even Wikipedia demonstrates ‘Christians’ are not as homogenised in their views as you think they are. You should google it, even Wikipedia has page with some info about the differences in opinion in the religion. It is 2.2 billion people with many different denominations, and they’re not all the same, and even within those denominations people can have differences of opinion.

              • April 15th 2018 @ 5:48pm
                Kane said | April 15th 2018 @ 5:48pm | ! Report

                Rugby Tragic Too so you’re saying Folau is a hypocrite and not a devout christian?

                Well looks like we agree.

              • April 15th 2018 @ 8:04pm
                Rugby Tragic Too said | April 15th 2018 @ 8:04pm | ! Report

                Fionn have you read the old testament?

              • April 15th 2018 @ 8:07pm
                Fionn said | April 15th 2018 @ 8:07pm | ! Report

                I have. Have you?

                Do you honestly believe all Christians follow the old Testament to the letter of the law, and that all devout Christians believe it is literal and not a metaphor?

                I’m not saying that any particular Christian thinks a certain way, you’re the only one here saying what all Christians must do, and how all Christians must feel.

                Have you ever read the New Testament?

        • Roar Guru

          April 16th 2018 @ 11:46am
          Timbo (L) said | April 16th 2018 @ 11:46am | ! Report

          Political spin:

          “Devout Christians” is supposed to be some sort of moral high ground.

          Call it what it is – he is a member of a bigoted, intolerant medieval cult.

          It completely changes the narrative.

      • April 15th 2018 @ 2:30pm
        Big Daddy said | April 15th 2018 @ 2:30pm | ! Report

        Or matt cechin if he returns to league.

      • April 15th 2018 @ 7:33pm
        Akari said | April 15th 2018 @ 7:33pm | ! Report

        Are you suggesting that Nigel Owens is as narrow minded as Israel Folau?

        Thankfully for us rugby lovers, Nigel isn’t. That’s why he’s been one of the best and most respected in the refereeing business for the past few years now.

    • April 14th 2018 @ 10:26am
      Tez said | April 14th 2018 @ 10:26am | ! Report

      Such a storm in a tea cup ….. while I disagree with Israel’s opinion …. I agree with his right to his own opinion and faith. Don’t agree with him ? Fine. Move on. As regards the ARU and Qantas why make a mountain out of a molehill?

      Folau will stay in Rugby. He has stated many times his desire to play next year’s World Cup. Whatever you think of Izzy he sticks to his word.

      • April 14th 2018 @ 1:05pm
        Ruckin Oaf said | April 14th 2018 @ 1:05pm | ! Report

        “As regards the ARU and Qantas why make a mountain out of a molehill?”

        Dunno maybe they like the idea of being financially viable organisations.

      • Roar Guru

        April 16th 2018 @ 11:49am
        Timbo (L) said | April 16th 2018 @ 11:49am | ! Report

        I have the same right, and possibly a moral responsibility not to move on.

        By skipping over it it makes you an apologist and a sympathizer.

        Foolau needs to continue to feel the burn of public outrage. Maybe he will repent and change his ways or his football code, I don’t care which, as long as it is one or both.

    • April 14th 2018 @ 10:34pm
      Johnny Ventolin said | April 14th 2018 @ 10:34pm | ! Report

      Agnostics outraged when a religious person says they’ll end up in place they don’t believe exists. Ha ha ha ha ha!

      Nekminnit Trump will really ‘go nuclear’… no, wait

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