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Rugby: McMahon’s Sunwolves contract dependent on medical test

Sean McMahon helped Suntory Sungoliath into the Japan Rugby Top League semifinals on Saturday but said taking up a Super Rugby contract with the Sunwolves was still dependent on a medical assessment.

The Australian back-row forward had not played a league game since suffering a foot injury on Sept. 7. But he put in a strong 57 minutes, scoring a try as Suntory booked their spot in the last four with a 28-26 win over Kubota Spears at Prince Chichibu Memorial Rugby Ground.

Despite not being in the Sunwolves initial 29-man squad announced Tuesday, it was reported from Australia that McMahon had signed a contact with the Sunwolves back in July.

On Saturday he confirmed he was hoping to join the Japanese Super Rugby outfit but that it was still dependent on a medical test.

«I did just a kind of minor Lisfranc (fracture) after getting into an awkward situation in a ruck,» he told Kyodo News of the injury he suffered in Round 2 of the Top League.

«Everything’s OK. But just getting back into that first game the lungs were burning a little bit and I was just trying to get that rhythm back.»

The 24-year-old, who has been capped 26 times by the Wallabies, said that for now he was «trying to focus on the Top League playoffs» before any final decision was made as to whether he will play Super Rugby.

«My foot still needs a bit of work to get back to the level where I want to be playing at,» he said.

If he does pass the medical test, McMahon will play for the Sunwolves for at least a season, making him all but ineligible to play for Australia at next year’s Rugby World Cup.

«It was a tough decision but I love being here in Japan and the opportunity was there and I just went with it,» he said.

And if he had his way he would like to spend even more time in Japan.

«I would love to continue on here especially with Suntory. It’s a great side, the staff, the facilities, the way we play. It’s a great place to be playing footy and I’ve been loving it.»

«There’s a lot of young talent that I enjoy playing with and I am trying to teach them what I have learnt from my playing experiences.»

All — Kyodo News+

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