McDonnell keeping fingers crossed

St Helens Shannon McDonnell (right)
St Helens Shannon McDonnell (right)
Share this article

Lady Luck has rarely smiled on Aussie Shannon McDonnell since he packed his suitcase and headed to the UK to pursue his Rugby League career.

Injury ruled him out of Hull FC’s 16-0 defeat in the 2013 Challenge Cup Final against Wigan Warriors after he picked up a hamstring problem during the semi-final victory over Warrington Wolves.

And he was left kicking in heels in frustration on the side lines little more than 12 months later as a Saints’ player when Nathan’s Brown’s boys demolished the Cherry and Whites 14-6 in the Old Trafford Grand Final.

Missing the two biggest showpieces in the domestic calendar will have been a bitter pill to swallow for the 28-year-old full-back whose first crack at Super League football came after he joined Hull KR in 2012, making 22 appearances before crossing the city to join the Airlie Birds.

But his tale of woe didn’t end there and to top it all his 2015 season at Langtree Park came to a cruel end at Castleford in June when he snapped his Achilles tendon.

Now he is keeping his fingers crossed that his injury jinx is a thing of the past and he is trying to build on the handful of appearance he has already made in Super League XXI.

“It’s just great to be back,” said the former Wests Tigers and Newcastle Knights player.

McDonnell, an Ireland international, added: “I’ve been extremely unlucky with injuries but everything now seems okay. I’m concentrating on myself and building my game and hopefully help the club win some more silverware.

“There’s nothing worse than sitting out a final, knowing you can do little about the outcome, but hopefully that will change this season.”

McDonnell is in the final 12 months of his contract but at this moment in time he is unsure what the future holds.

Whether he is offered another deal will depend largely on how he performances in 2016 - and let’s hope he isn’t beset once more my injuries.

The lad certainly deserves a break.