Nick Cummins fit for Wallabies duties
May 26, 2013
Western Force winger Nick Cummins is expected to be fit to face the Lions © Getty Images
Western Force winger Nick Cummins is expected to take part in the June 5 tour match against the British & Irish Lions despite battling another knee injury.
Cummins, who missed seven games earlier this season due to inflammation in his knee, was a late withdrawal from Saturday night's 19-18 win over the Highlanders at nib Stadium after copping a knock to the same knee a week earlier.
Force coach Michael Foley said the issue wasn't serious, and was confident Cummins would be fine to take part in the Wallabies' three-Test showdown against the Lions, as well as the Force's match against the tourists.
"If we had another two days to prepare for the Highlanders game, I think he would have played," Foley said. "He'll be fine."
The Force appeared headed for another heartbreaking defeat when Colin Slade's 77th-minute penalty gave the Highlanders a two-point lead.
But Force fullback Jayden Hayward came to the rescue, scoring a penalty of his own with less than two minutes remaining to inspire the Perth-based franchise to their third win of the season.
The result lifted the Force six points clear of the last-placed Highlanders, giving Foley's team vital breathing space in the wooden spoon battle. But Foley said ladder positions weren't the main focus for his team.
"I don't really care so much about that," Foley said. "Breathing space between them or us - we are not measuring ourselves against anybody, just measuring ourselves against what we want to achieve."
Western Force recorded their third win of the season against the Highlanders (video available in Australia only)
The Force have blown several match-winning positions this season, but Foley was proud of the constant spirit displayed by the team.
"Our guys just fight for each other week in, week out," Foley said. "It's so easy for groups of people to go through difficult periods of time and slowly but surely individuals put their hand up and say 'that's enough for me, I don't want to try anymore'. I haven't sensed that from anyone in our squad. You just can't fault the effort."
The Force have a 10-day break before taking on the Lions. They then round out their season with home games against New South Wales Waratahs and the Brumbies.