Billy Vunipola has refused to unlike an Instagram post published by Israel Folau in which the Australia full-back made homophobic remarks.
Folau said on Wednesday that “hell awaits” homosexuals in comments that have resulted in Rugby Australia stating they intend to terminate his contract, effectively ruling him out of this autumn’s World Cup.
In an apparent show of support to his fellow Christian, Vunipola states that “Man was made for woman to pro create that was the goal no?”
However, England’s first choice number eight adds that “I don’t HATE anyone”.
Vunipola could face disciplinary action from the Rugby Football Union in response to the anti-gay position outlined in his post.
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“So this morning I got 3 phone calls from people telling me to ‘unlike’ the @izzyfolau post. This is my position on it. I don’t HATE anyone neither do I think I’m perfect,” the Saracens back row said.
“There just comes a point when you insult what I grew up believing in that you just say enough is enough, what he’s saying isn’t that he doesn’t like or love those people.
“He’s saying how we live our lives needs to be closer to how God intended them to be. Man was made for woman to pro create that was the goal no? I’m not perfect I’m at least everything on that list at least at one point in my life. It hurts to know that.
“But that’s why I believe there’s a God. To guide and protect us and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.”
Vunipola’s mother is Reverend Iesinga Vunipola, a Methodist Minister, and the 26-year-old has repeatedly spoken of the strength he draws from his faith.
His recent career has been interrupted by a series of significant injuries, most notably three successive broken arms, but he appeared throughout England’s recent Six Nations campaign.
Although he has yet to regain top form in the wake of his repeated spells in the treatment room, he will enter the World Cup as undisputed first choice in his position.