ISRAEL FOLAU has incredibly launched an appeal to help raise £1.65million to fight his Rugby Australia sacking.
The 73-cap wing was axed last month for a homophobic online rant claiming "hell awaits drunks, homosexuals, adulterers, liars, fornicators, thieves, atheists and idolators".
2 Controversial star Israel Folau is asking for help fund an appeal against his sacking by Rugby AustraliaCredit: Reuters
Folau, 30, insists his sacking was "unlawful" and has launched a crowdfunding page to aid his legal battle.
He posted: "My fight with Rugby Australia to defend my right to practice my religion has so far cost my wife Maria and me over A$100,000 (£55k) in legal fees.
"The cost to me and my family of continuing my legal action against Rugby Australia is expected to be significant.
"Rugby Australia has an army of lawyers at their disposal and they have already said they will divert significant resources to fight me in court."
Folau, whose international deal was due to run until 2022, was set to be a key man for the Aussies at the World Cup in Japan this autumn.
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He has now been stripped of sponsorship deals with Land Rover and sportswear brand Asics.
The former rugby league and AFL star is claimed to be seeking £5.5m in damages against Rugby Australia.
The appeal, which was launched earlier today, has so far raised just A$993 (£541) of his A$3m target (£1.65m).
2 Israel Folau says he is just standing up for his religious beliefs but his comments outraged many and led to his axingCredit: AFP or licensors