Hull KR's Shannon McDonnell hoping for another Exiles 'honour'
HULL KR full-back Shannon McDonnell hopes he has done enough to keep his place in the Exiles squad, but admits playing in one clash was an honour and a pleasure.
McDonnell received a late call-up for the Exiles on Friday morning as a replacement for Warrington's injured Brett Hodgson.
Hodgson, who was initially named as Exiles skipper, is facing a battle to be fit for the second game on July 4.
If he fails to recover from his hamstring injury, McDonnell will step into the breach again, even though he expects Hodgson to be fit.
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"I didn't come into the game with any expectations," said McDonnell.
"It was a whirlwind and all the best to Brett on his recovery from the hamstring injury. He's the captain, so I'll keep trying to play well for Hull KR and see what happens from there.
"It was an honour to play one game and a compliment to my recent form. I'll take this as a massive achievement."
McDonnell did well to settle into the Exiles' environment after having just one training session to get up to speed with the systems and structures coach Daniel Anderson had put in place.
"We really gave it to them in parts of the game," added McDonnell.
"But we were unlucky with a couple of kicks on final plays.
"Credit to them, though, they still had to score the tries.
"We'll take a lot of positives, especially from the way we defended and I wasn't too unhappy with my own performance.
"Coming into the squad late, there were a few things I would have liked to have changed. But I just wanted to make sure I was carrying the ball strongly and in the positions I needed to be to put my best foot forward."
McDonnell had been in the unusual position of being wanted by two teams in action at Langtree Park on Saturday.
With McDonnell qualifying for Ireland because of his mother, they were keen for him to play against the Knights in the day's curtain raiser.
With next year's World Cup in mind, McDonnell has vowed to commit to Ireland after missing out in 2008 because of injury.
"I'd love to put my hand up and play for Ireland next year," he explained.
"They are in a tough pool but it would be a great experience and something I'd be committed to.
"I spoke with their coach at the start of the week and he was keen for me to play against the Knights."
McDonnell's immediate future is still uncertain after KR announced the former Newcastle Knights star, who only signed a one-year deal for this season, would be leaving at the end of the campaign.
He has been linked with a move to other Super League sides and a return to the NRL, although Rovers' fans would like him to stay after impressing in recent weeks.
As for McDonnell, he will leave his future in the hands of his agent.
"I'll leave that to my manager because I don't like to talk about things off the field," he said.