Johnston available for clash with Fiji


PAPUA New Guinea international and South Sydney Rabbitohs winger Alex Johnston has declared his availability for the Kumuls’ June 25 Pacific Test against the Fiji Batis.
The Campbelltown Stadium clash in Sydney will be the Kumuls’ first Test match since 2019 when they recorded a historic win over Great Britain in Port Moresby.
Johnston, who is the 2014 premiership winner, told The National on Tuesday that he could not wait to play his third Test for PNG.
Meanwhile, the 27-year-old said he was surprised that he had been shortlisted for the South Pacific Brewery-sponsored Sports Awards’ male athlete of the year.
West Sepik native Johnston and Melbourne Storm centre Justin Olam are in the running for the award.
The former Dally M Winger of the Year said his shortlisting meant a lot to him.
“I can’t wait to represent my mother and my family again in the Kumuls jersey, and try to live up to this (SP Sports Awards) nomination,” Johnston said.
“I was not expecting this nomination at all, it is a huge honour to even be nominated for the male athlete of the year. I’m very thankful for being recognised by PNG.
“It’s something that makes my family proud, especially my mother where my PNG heritage comes from.” Johnston made his PNG debut in the Kumuls’ 20-22 Oceania Cup loss to Fiji in Christchurch, New Zealand, in 2019. The La Perouse Panthers junior scored his first try in PNG colours during his second Test when the Kumuls beat Great Britain 28-10.