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Cummins gets creative

Australia wing Nick Cummins could extend his Japanese stint into a third year in exchange for a Super Rugby loan move that reopens his World Cup chances.

The 'Honey Badger' said he had been "busting for a bit of meat" before claiming a priceless try against his international team-mates as the Barbarians went down fighting 40-36 at Twickenham.

The 27-year-old vowed to fulfil his two-year deal with Japanese club Coca Cola West Red Sparks, but admitted to being "creative" in his bid for a Super Rugby loan deal.

Cummins must complete next season's Super Rugby campaign to qualify for Australia selection, and is still in talks to secure a short-term release from his club.

"I would love to be back in the mix there, but I've signed for two years in Japan and I'm a man of my word so I'll go through with that," said Cummins.

"If there's a chance we can work things out, I'd be stoked.

"We're being creative already, trying to get it through. Sometimes it's not so straightforward with the language barrier."

New Australia boss Michael Cheika has told Cummins to arrange his own Super Rugby return to be eligible for international selection.

Cummins is now understood to be willing to extend his Coca Cola contract in exchange for a season-long release that would pave the way for a World Cup recall.

"I'm lucky enough to have a crew behind me, my agent and family: I'm happy to be on board and I'm doing my best," said Cummins.

"Contract-wise we're trying to be creative: it's not just about me taking, it's a two-way street, whatever I can give to them, and what they can do for me, hopefully we can work together.

"At the moment they have the power, so I suppose that's what we've been doing."

Nicknamed the 'Honey Badger' due to his love of the African weasel, Cummins spent a week living with Mongolian nomads before linking up with the Barbarians.

The free-thinking wing still switched on to score one of five Barbarians tries in a narrow defeat to Australia, who had new boss Cheika at the helm for the first time.

Sam Carter, Benn Robinson, Tevita Kuridrani, Rob Horne, Bernard Foley and Sean McMahon crossed for the Australians, who struggled for rhythm throughout Saturday's Twickenham encounter.

The Wallabies had Will Genia and Quade Cooper back in half-back tandem for the first time in a year, but still lacked fluency.

Frank Halai, Adam Thomson, Francis Saili and Marnitz Boshoff claimed the other scores for the Barbarians, John Kirwan's side unlucky not to prevail in the event.

The Barbarians now face Leicester at Welford Road on Tuesday night before head coach Kirwan's squad disbands and a new group will face the Combined Services in the annual Remembrance fixture in Bath on November 11.

Cummins said he will try to talk Coca Cola into allowing him to stay in England for the Bath fixture, keen to pay tribute to the fallen.

"There's a Remembrance game against the Combined Services which I'd love to get involved in," he said, before summing up scoring against his national side.

"I'd like to hang around for that, but we'll have to talk to Coca Cola, again, and gee whizz, we'll see how that goes.

"A lot of people have got feelings towards that, and everyone's been told a lot of stories over the years about your grandparents and great-grandparents.

"It's one of those special things in everyone's hearts.

"I was bloody busting for a bit of meat against the Wallabies, so it was great to get that try in the end.

"It wasn't even a move. Old Timmy (Tim Nanai-Williams) just said 'give me the ball early, Badge: get off me hip', and I just said 'copy that'.

"The next thing you know we're bloody under the sticks: outstanding."


From Belfast Telegraph