- Publish Date
- Wednesday, 27 November 2019, 2:53PM
Israel Folau is now demanding $14 million in damages from Rugby Australia, claiming he could have been captain of the Wallabies.
Folau, who was sacked for anti-gay comments made on social media this year, said his contract termination will cost him $4.2 million from 2019-2022, as well as $300,000 in match payments from 2019-2021.
He also claims he stood to make up to $1.5 million a season with an overseas club for two-to-three years when his contract with RA was up.
Lost sponsorship dollars, and the missed revenue of competing at World Cups and possibly captaining the national team were also used to justify the controversial star's new $14 million demand.
The Daily Telegraph reported that Folau estimated his earnings post-retirement for "possible captainship of a trophy-winning Wallabies team at an approximate rate of $30,000 to $50,000 per annum for between 15 to 25 years (approx $450,000 to $1,250,000)."
The lawsuit argues that Rugby Australia breached their obligations by "failing to bring all material evidentiary matters to the attention of the Tribunal, including the fact that a senior player had told the CEO of Rugby Australia ("Ms Raelene Castle") and the coach of the Wallabies ("Mr Michael Cheika") that the termination of Mr Folau was likely to cause division amongst the Wallabies, and that Christian Polynesians in the team were offended by the actions of Rugby Australia (and the Waratahs)."
His statement also notes that Folau said in a code of conduct hearing in May that he had support from his teammates.
"During the hearing before the Tribunal, Mr Folau revealed to the Tribunal that at least 15 teammates and members of coaching staff had either provided him with messages of support and/or urged for his return to the playing field and that he had been informed by his teammates and management that there would be no disharmony or impact on team cohesion if he were to return to the game."
Folau has not stayed out of the limelight since his sacking, claiming earlier this month that the bushfires that ravaged Australia were God's punishment, linking the fires to same-sex marriage and abortion legislation.
This article was first published on nzherald.co.nz and is republished here with permission.