Ross Moriarty claims he doesn’t care what people have got to say about him on social media after being labelled “scum”.
The Wales back-row star was targeted by critics following his sending off in Argentina for an illegal chokehold on Pumas’ outside-half Nicolas Sanchez.
He hit back at his abusers with a message via Instagram, which read: “I appreciate the hate messages… when you hide behind your keyboard you maggots.”
And, speaking today at his new club Dragons, Moriarty insisted he won’t be changing his aggressive approach to rugby after copping a four-week ban for foul play during the comprehensive second Test victory over Argentina.
“I think everyone knows what I’m about and that’s what I’m going to bring every week. So people shouldn’t expect anything less,” he declared.
“I was disappointed with the finish of the tour but there’s plenty of rugby to be had and I’m sure, when I get back to it, I will definitely make up for it.”
Moriarty defended his actions in Santa Fe, saying: “There’s definitely a lot of players who have lost their heads a lot worse than I have in rugby but there’s always going to be times when players do silly things.
“I could have done a lot worse but I did what I did and got red-carded, and I paid the price.”
Asked if he would curb his no-nonsense approach on the pitch, the 24-year-old replied: “No, being the way that I am has got me to where I am today.
“So I can’t change too much and I can’t take certain things out of my game.
“I haven’t said I can justify what I did (in Argentina), but if someone smashes your head into the floor, what would you want to do?
“What people forget sometimes is it is a physical game and people do things sometimes that people overlook and they then only see the end result and, sadly for him (Sanchez), it was what it was.
“Obviously, choking people out is going to have to go out of it. That was a silly moment which I regret.”
But he added: “Like I said, I do what I do and I’m not going to change that. I’m going to carry on doing (playing on the edge) it.”
Moriarty played a starring role during Wales’ victory over South Africa in Washington and the 2-0 drubbing of the Pumas which followed in Argentina.
“I enjoyed it. Considering how little I had played last season I was happy with what I got through during that tour,” beamed the 23-times capped Wales forward.
“I felt like I made good impacts on the games, I felt my physicality was right and that’s what we needed because it was a young squad and there was quite a lot of players who hadn’t played for Wales before. I felt like I gave them confidence.
“I enjoyed it. I was just really happy to be on the field for 80 minutes three times in a row for the first time in a whole season. I was just pleased to be on tour.”
Moriarty took the decision to shut down his Twitter account, explaining: “I’m not too fussed on what other people have got to say about me, whether it’s good or bad.
“Obviously, it’s nice when people say good things about you but you can have people saying bad, which is fair enough, because everyone has their own opinions but, personally, for players, why do you need to listen to what they have got to say?
“At the end of the day it’s my family which I care about most. They will tell me if I’m not very good and I’ll accept that from them and they will also tell me if I have played well.”