Josh Mansour hasn’t given up hope of earning an NRL lifeline, knocking back the opportunity to move overseas and instead focusing on his growing family.
The 32-year-old was left unsigned by South Sydney at the end of the 2022 season, after featuring in just five games for the club and scoring only two tries.
Mansour represented Lebanon at the Rugby League World Cup and while over in the UK, was approached by Super League clubs regarding the possibility of a switch.
Speaking on SEN Radio, Mansour admitted he was ready to move overseas to continue his playing career, but has opted to remain in Australia with his third child on the way.
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“It was [an option] earlier on, especially when I was over there for the World Cup…I experienced the country and the culture and I really enjoyed it,” he said.
“I convinced the missus to pack up our bags, head over and seek a new challenge. However, with a third child on the way, that kind of threw a bit of a curveball at me.
“I think I have to put that aside. I have to stay in Australia and stay close to family. My daughter is about to start kindergarten and there’s a lot going on.
“It would be too difficult.”
Mansour has played 174 NRL games since making his debut for Penrith over a decade ago and has been a consistent performer, scoring 86 tries across his 10-year career.
His carries out of the back-field made Mansour a handful for opposition defences and put him in the representative frame on multiple occasions, playing for both NSW and Australia throughout his career.
And despite his time in first grade clearly coming to an end, Mansour hasn’t given up hope of earning a contract with an NRL club for 2023 and is keeping himself fit if the opportunity arises.
“I’m not going to lie, it’s been a frustrating and hard couple of months,” he said.
“It’s been difficult but I’m still trying to do my best to keep fit. I’m mainly by myself which is difficult, because you have to motivate yourself and write your own program.
“I’ve played the game for so many years so I’ve got that experience and knowledge so I’m just trying to replicate a pre-season as best as I can on my own.
“If the opportunity comes up, I want to be ready.”