NZ Herald

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Israel Folau has begun discussions to launch a return to the rugby league field.

The Daily Telegraph reports the New York franchise, which joins the British competition this season, made a pitch to Folau in a phone call recently.

The former Wallaby could be joining All Black Sonny Bill Williams in North America.

Rugby Australia and Folau announced an out-of-court settlement late last year following months of fallout stemming from Folau being sacked over his controversial social media posts, which read: “Drunks, Homosexuals, Adulterers, Liars, Fornicators, Thieves, Atheists, Idolators: Hell Awaits You. Repent! Only Jesus Saves.”

The sacked star is determined to remain in the professional athlete cycle and is reportedly eyeing up a return to league.

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Folau began his career in the 13-man code in 2007 playing for the Melbourne Storm before joining the Brisbane Broncos two years later. He had a successful four-year career in the game representing Queensland in State of Origin and playing eight tests for Australia before switching to Aussie rules and then rugby.

New York’s new rugby league franchise began urgent internal discussions to attract Folau to the States, the Daily Telegraph reported in December.

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New York officials told the Telegraph the city would be the “perfect place for Folau to continue his career and rediscover the form that led him to representing the Kangaroos and Wallabies.”

In April British clubs voted in favour of New York and Ottawa joining their domestic league structure which already includes the Toronto Wolfpack, which joined in 2017.

The Wolfpack signed All Black Williams to a reported two-year $10m deal, proving the franchises are willing to throw big money at big names.

This article first appeared on nzherald.co.nz and is republished with permission.

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