McMahon reveals shower secret

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Walk into the Wallabies locker room before a Test and you won’t see Sean McMahon sitting on a bench reading the match day program.

Instead, the fearless flanker will be towelled up or in the shower, giving himself a final rinse of nerves ahead of the game.

A hot shower has become a full-blown ritual for the 23-year-old these days, a chance to clarify his thoughts before running out.

“That’s how I get myself fired up for a game,” he said.

“When you get up in the morning and have a shower it refreshes you and brings you back to life and switches you on.”

Sean McMahon revealed an unorthodox pre-game ritual. Photo: Getty ImagesHe admitted it wasn’t the most conventional gameday preparation, but it seems to be working, as the backrower continues a stellar year in the gold jersey.

“There is always someone watching me thinking I am a bit weird,” he said.

“The boys are putting their socks on while I am putting my towel around my waist and heading into the shower.

The full-blown ritual began in his early days at the Rebels, after seeing Scott Higginbotham do some pre-game ice baths.

“I saw Higgers jumping into an ice bath and thought I might have a shower and see what happens; it calms you down and wastes a little bit of time.

“Sometimes when you get to the changing room there is a little bit of time you want to waste and not be thinking about the game too heavily."

Winger Reece Hodge said McMahon’s habits had certainly not gone unnoticed, but he wasn’t setting a trend with his last-minute rinses.

“I have noticed that he glad wraps all his tatts and his strapping and stuff before he has a shower in the pre-match,” he said.

“It works for him, he's playing great footy.

“I'm just pretty chilled out before the game and just try and relax and just enjoy ourselves.”

Sean McMahon isn't worried about competing with bigger bodies. Photo: Getty imagesHowever unusual McMahon’s superstitions are, it’s paying off on the field and the Wallabies will be hoping for another barnstorming effort from him in his second last Test before heading to Japan.

Though he will be outsized by some margin, compared to England no. 8 Nathan Hughes, intimidation is not something that enters McMahon’s mind.

“Everyone is bigger than me in the front forward,” he said.

“The bigger they are, the harder they tend to fall.

“You go out with enough heart to get the job done.

“If you are 50 per cent, you will generally hurt yourself so you have to go 110 per cent and make sure you do the job on them.”

Australia takes on England on Saturday November 17, kicking off at 3pm local, Sunday 2am AEDT, LIVE on beIN Sports and SBS.