League star Folau snubs Rebels
May 29, 2010
Israel Folau will not become a Rebel © Getty Images
The Melbourne Rebels will not be welcoming rugby league star Israel Folau into the fold for next season's Super 15.
The 21-year-old is one of the hottest properties in Australian sport and started for Queensland in the first State of Origin game at ANZ Stadium on Wednesday. While he still has an offer on the table from an AFL franchise he looks set to remain an NRL player, possibly with his current club, Brisbane Broncos.
''We got the call from his manager, Isaac Moses, Friday to let us know he wouldn't be coming to the Melbourne Rebels,'' Melbourne official Wani Wall told The Sydney Morning Herald. ''And whilst we're disappointed, we pursued it only because when they came to us we felt that he genuinely wanted to come to Melbourne.
''The important thing we want people to know is that we didn't pursue him, although he's a great athlete, he came to us with what we believed was a genuine interest to play rugby. We don't know what he's going to do because that wasn't passed on to us, but I presume he'll stay with league. And Rod Macqueen and the rest of the club wish him well.''
The Rebels have this week continued to build their squad for their Super Rugby debut, with former All Black lock Kevin O'Neill and ex-Wallaby prop Nic Henderson signing with the franchise. .