I don't know what future holds: Folau
June 16, 2014
Folau has made a huge impact for the Wallabies since his debut last year © Getty Images
Wallabies superstar Israel Folau admits he misses rugby league and insists he no idea what he will do with his career after next year's Rugby World Cup.
Folau will become the hottest property across two codes ahead of coming off contract in 2015, with NRL clubs and cashed-up foreign rugby clubs to provide competition as the Australian Rugby Union attempts to retain its biggest drawcard.
He made it clear he is keeping all options open. Reports have suggested he could be tempted by a big-money offer from big-spending French club rugby champions Toulon before the World Cup, however he ruled out any move before the World Cup in September next year. After that though, it seems all bets are off.
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Speaking on Monday, Folau acknowledged he missed playing rugby league's State of Origin for Queensland, an arena where he starred as a youngster. And he said competing at the 2016 Olympic Games wasn't something he had thought much about, even though the ARU is likely to use the prospect of winning the inaugural Rugby Sevens gold medal in Rio as a carrot in its negotiations.
"There's a lot of options that's going to be presented when that time comes. I'll have a look at everything and see what I do from there," said Folau. "I'm signed to the 'Tahs [NSW Waratahs] for next year so that's all I'm thinking about. I [don't know what the future holds]. I'll assess as we get closer but at this stage I'm just thinking about today."
It has been four years since Folau last represented Queensland in rugby league's State of Origin. "I miss it a little bit to be quite honest," he said. "But in saying that I'm grateful I've been there before and I'm enjoying where I am right now."
Asked whether the Olympics might be a lure, Folau replied: "I wouldn't write it off."
Folau was targeted by the French in Saturday's dour 6-0 Test match in Melbourne. They appeared to kick to him, knowing his return kicking is not the strongest, and sent down a solid defensive line to ensure his dangerous counter-attack running did not threaten.
He said he expected to be confronted with those tactics regularly leading into the World Cup as teams attempt to nullify his attacking potential. To combat being the most marked man on the field, Folau says he is trying to improve his kicking game and build combinations with his outside men.
"That's just the way it is. They did a good job of that so it's a matter of finding different ways. I've got to work with the guys around me really. I think I'm more reactive to running the ball, but I want to find that balance when to run and when to kick."
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