SYDNEY (Reuters) – Winger and cult figure Nick Cummins is back in the reckoning for Australia’s 2015 World Cup campaign after being released by his Japanese club to play in Super Rugby for the Western Force next season.
The 27-year-old, whose neat line in Australian slang has made him a favourite with rugby fans Down Under, was released from his Force contract at the end of last season on compassionate grounds to take up a lucrative deal in Japan.
That ruled him out of international contention under Australian Rugby Union (ARU) rules but an appearance for the Barbarians against the Wallabies in England prompted a rethink.
“In November I was given an opportunity to play for the Barbarians,” he said in a Force media release on Tuesday.
“Walking off the field after the match at Twickenham was a surreal experience, knowing I had just played against my country. It definitely lit a fire within and had me thinking about what could have been.
“But I heard a bloke say at the end of the Super Rugby season that he hadn’t heard no fat lady sing.”
Cummins, who has scored six tries in 15 tests for Australia, will see out the season at the Red Sparks before moving back to Perth and then return to the Fukuoka-based club for the 2015-16 Japanese Top League season.
“I’m stoked to be back on the burst and returning to Australian rugby in 2015,” Cummins added.
“Thanks to the Western Force and more importantly the Red Sparks in Japan for making my return back to Australia possible.
“Gonna be a huge year. Can’t wait to get amongst it.”