Lions series in Cummins' thoughts

by staff

Australia wing Nick Cummins openly admits that next summer's British and Irish Lions tour Down Under is on his mind.

But the Western Force speedster insists he has relegated it to the back of his thought processes behind two other important matters - beating Wales and then taking a holiday. Cummins believes they are both important factors as Australia look to enter Lions year in prime mental and physical shape.

"We have a few new blokes in the team, and we have had a lot of injuries this year," he said. "If everyone is fit, we will have a good stock to pick from against the Lions. That tour is at the back of your mind, but there are two things we need to do first."

Cummins added: "We need to finish this tour on a good note, giving us something to build on when we get back, and then have a well-earned break to freshen the mind so you have the eye of the tiger when you come back, a burning desire to get into them."

Australia have bounced back solidly from a 33-6 drubbing against France in Paris 18 days ago, beating England and Italy to set themselves up for a possible eighth successive victory over Wales.

The Wallabies have had an Indian sign on Wales during Warren Gatland's reign as coach of the current RBS 6 Nations champions, winning seven times from eight meetings.

Wales, though, are battling to avoid an autumn Test series whitewash following defeats against Argentina, Samoa and New Zealand, which is a driving factor not lost on Cummins or his colleagues.

"I reckon Wales will be hungrier than ever," added the 25-year-old. "We are going to have to be on the ball because they will want to finish strongly. Although we are at the end of our tour, we cannot afford to slack off. It will be whoever fronts up on the day.

"There was not much in it in the series earlier this year (Australia won it 3-0 by a combined margin of 11 points), and we know only our best will do. Wales are more like a southern hemisphere team than any of the other European sides in the way they look to move the ball and throw it around.

"Our defence was a big point for us against England, and it will be another big one for us on Saturday. We have to be urgent and catch them behind the gain-line. Everyone has their own style and strengths. New Zealand are great in their way, but Wales can also do some incredible things. We cannot let our guard down."