Quade aims to excel for Wallabies - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Quade aims to excel for Wallabies

By Jim Morton and Darren Walton 13/08/2010 04:41:30 PM Comments (0)

Wallabies X-factor Quade Cooper has revealed he wants to scale great heights in rugby union before considering any thoughts of switching codes.

Despite a report his manager last week held talks with NRL club Parramatta, Cooper has told AAP he's determined to help the Wallabies to the 2011 World Cup and continue Queensland's Super rugby revival.

Australian Rugby Union boss John O'Neill has also stressed the red-hot playmaker, who has verbally agreed to a further two years with the Reds, wouldn't be lost to league.

O'Neill suggested player agent Richard Colreavy's secret Eels meeting was a negotiation stunt ahead of talks with the ARU on Friday afternoon and doubted the NRL could afford him.

Parramatta officials also dismissed Colreavy's approach as a bid to lift his asking price in rugby.

Cooper grew up playing both league and union until 17 and has a healthy interest in the 13-man code but playing rugby - for both the Wallabies and Reds - remains his priority.

"I've always had (league) in the back of my mind because I like watching league and I loved playing it but at the same time I've enjoyed rugby and I haven't really achieved too much in the game as yet that I want to achieve," he told AAP.

"I have been chased a little bit (by leagues clubs before) but at the same time it's pretty hard to leave when you haven't achieved anything.

"My first three years with the Reds we were last, third last and second last.

"To leave on that note, there's two ways to go about it.

"You can want to leave because you are not doing well or you can face that challenge and say you want to stay and be on that wave when it does come in.

"You would think it's just around the corner and if you left now you would miss that."

Cooper has played just 16 Tests and only cemented the Wallabies No.10 jersey in June after starring as the Australian Super 14 player of the year.

But the maturing five-eighth's value to Australian rugby was underlined by his absence in the back-to-back Bledisloe Cup losses in the past fortnight.

The ARU has been tightening its belt since the 2007 World Cup and massive salaries shelled out to Matt Giteau and Lote Tuqiri have become a thing of the past.

But O'Neill said Cooper could expect a reasonable increase in his contract but also indicated he shouldn't forget the support shown by the ARU and QRU following burglary charges in December.

"He's got the world at his feet in our game, he's got a World Cup next year, he's a player we want to retain and we're confident in the coming week or so we'll have a satisfactory deal done," he said.

"I think all of what we've done with Quade in the last six months shows great support for Quade ... the ARU and QRU could not have done more."

On a day he was boosted by the announcement of the return of lock Dan Vickerman for 2011, Wallabies coach Robbie Deans denied he had any concerns at all about Cooper who is yet to challenge himself against the All Blacks.

"There is no dalliance with league," he said. "Quade's expressed to us that not only does he love what he does but he wants to continue doing it."

Brought to you by AAP AAP © 2024 AAP

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