Wallabies coach won't nominate his No.10 - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Wallabies coach won't nominate his No.10

By Justin Chadwick And Jim Morton 10/05/2010 07:32:45 PM Comments (0)

Australia coach Robbie Deans remains tight-lipped on who will get first crack at the key playmaker's role this year as the Wallabies prepare to unleash a new brand of risky rugby.

Quade Cooper emerged as a world-class five-eighth for the Reds this season while Matt Giteau, the Wallabies' incumbent No.10, has played his best rugby for the Brumbies at inside centre in 2010.

Deans is tempted to take the Reds' powerful halves combination of Will Genia and Cooper straight into the Wallabies' set-up but said he was still weighing up his options.

"There's no doubt they (Cooper and Genia) will be familiar with each other and confident with each other off the back of what they've been doing," Deans said in Perth on Monday.

"But we have a number of options there (at flyhalf).

"We've now got choice, whereas we didn't have choice a year ago.

"That's great, it's a good problem to have but more importantly it's a good solution to have.

"Injuries and form won't derail our program.

"It does give us the ability to be flexible in our squad."

Surprisingly, Genia declared Giteau deserved first dibs on the No.10 jersey ahead of Cooper.

"I think Quade has had an outstanding season but you still have Matt Giteau out there and there's no doubting the class of him," Genia said.

"He's been so good for so long and anyone with that standing ... and that ability should have first crack."

Deans said the strong performances of the Brumbies, Waratahs and Reds this season, plus the good form of Matt Hodgson, David Pocock, Nathan Sharpe and James O'Connor at the struggling Force, had the Wallabies in good shape with the 2011 World Cup less than 16 months away.

"There's no doubt we're developing depth and that's evident in the performances of the franchises," he said.

"From a selection perspective we've got to make some decisions this year that we haven't had to make in the past."

The Wallabies scored just 19 tries in 12 Tests last year but Deans promised fans they would see a more attacking unit this year due to the new interpretations around the breakdown.

"I think you'll see less conservatism, a lot more willingness to attack," Deans said.

"We don't want to come close, we want to get home.

"We'll be prepared to take risks to achieve that."

The Wallabies kick off their international season against Fiji in Canberra on June 5 before facing off against England (in Perth on June 12 and Sydney June 19) and Ireland (in Brisbane on June 26).

"We are developing a really good tradition against England, it's becoming not unlike the Ashes," Deans said.

"The Cook Cup has become an important contest for us and in recent years we've had some really tight tussles."

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