Wallabies victories all that matter for Cooper
QUADE Cooper is adamant he can keep a blissful tunnel vision through his contract saga to only focus on Wallabies wins and the wisdom of new mentor Steve Larkham.
Whether he gets first shot at the No. 10 jersey on Saturday night against South Africa is the burning question because yesterday’s evidence was that Bernard Foley would start there. Cooper ( right) made it clear the only destination he was interested in was Suncorp Stadium, not whether he would be at French club Toulon or in Australia next year.
The Larkham influence could be the making of Cooper at 27. The 1999 World Cup winner’s ways were often the template that Eddie Jones, Cooper’s first Reds coach in 2007, used to show him how a top five- eighth should play.
Cooper’s style of playing flat at the defensive line with an array of passes to force misreads is the closest to the game Larkham came to master in his 102 Tests.
“I’ve never really had a backs coach like Bernie before and it’s something I’m relishing,” Cooper said.
“When I was younger, Eddie pushed me to watch Bernie as an example for myself to play flat, play at the line and use my passing ability.
“Having him here has taken it to a whole new level.”