Rugby

Smith won't turn back on Wallabies

2017-05-22 14:34
George Smith (Gallo Images)

Sydney - Wallabies great George Smith says he would 'never refuse' a Test recall if coach Michael Cheika were to pick him for the upcoming home series. 

Australia will take on Fiji, Scotland and Italy in their own backyard in June and Cheika is expected to name his 31-man squad sometime this week. 

It was only last year when Smith appeared to rule himself out of selection for the Wallabies, preferring to hand the baton over to the youth brigade. 

The 36-year-old's form for the Reds this season has been of such a high level that he is being touted with a possible return to the set-up, especially with Rebels flank Sean McMahon appearing to have ruled himself out of contention. 

And in apparent turnaround, Smith seems to have put himself back in contention for selection but only if the Wallabies were in a crisis and there were no viable options available. 

"I would never refuse one, if it was under the right circumstances," Smith told AAP

"But at the same time, if he's there to develop players within my position, I'd prefer he picked those players because they deserve the opportunity. 

"If it was a Steven Bradbury, everyone fell down (with injury), I'd be happy to put on the jersey again." 

Meanwhile, 2016 Super Rugby player of the year McMahon is reportedly unhappy with the Australian Rugby Union over a contract dispute and is set to turn his back on Wallabies selection, something that Smith is lamenting. 

"It's always a shame to lose any national player," Smith said. 

"First time I came up against (McMahon), he steamrolled me in the game against the Rebels.

"I'd implore him to see what's best for him as a player. He knows what his strengths are and if he feels (the best thing) to better himself as a player is to go overseas, then do that. 

"But it's ultimately up to him.

"I always encourage players to broaden their horizons and go and play in different countries because it does make you a better player. 

"(But I left) because I had longevity in the game here in Australia."

Read more on:    wallabies  |  george smith  |  rugby
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