Connolly calls for Cooper ban

2012-10-19 12:43
Quade Cooper (AFP)
Sydney - Former Test coach John Connolly has called for the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) to ban disgruntled playmaker Quade Cooper for 12 months for his "unforgivable" criticism of the Wallabies.

According to website, on a day when his coaching successor Robbie Deans said he'd started rebuilding bridges with Cooper, Connolly tipped the ARU to punish the star flyhalf in the next week over claims of a toxic environment in the Wallabies.

Cooper's future in the code is on thin ice following a series of attacks on the code and the Wallabies' boring style of play, and his reluctance to wear the gold jersey until things changed.

Connolly, who took Australia to the 2007 World Cup and previously coached Queensland through their successful 1990s era, said the attacks simply couldn't be tolerated.

"It's unforgivable what Cooper did," Connolly told Radio Sport New Zealand. "You can't imagine one of the All Blacks criticising (coach Steve) Hansen and the game.

"It's just ridiculous what's happened and I hope (the ARU) do make a strong statement. He's said he doesn't want to play for his country - well then that's fine.

"I don't think you treat the Wallabies coach or the country or the jersey or speak about the game the way he did without some severe ramifications - maybe a 12-month suspension from the game."

High-level talks between the ARU and Queensland Rugby Union over Cooper's issues are expected to be held this weekend and the matter is certain to be discussed at next week's ARU board meeting.

While sidelined by a knee injury, Cooper is determined to play on for the Queensland Reds - who boast an 87 per cent success rate in the past three seasons with him at No.10 - but he first needs to sign an ARU contract.

Deans on Friday said he'd spoken to the 24-year-old this week and would talk to him again in the days following Saturday night's Bledisloe clash at Suncorp Stadium.

Asked if he was confident there would be a resolution, Deans nodded.

Cooper's absence from the national team - on top of injuries to fellow playmakers James O'Connor and Berrick Barnes and halfback Will Genia - prompted reports Australia were considering calling Matt Giteau and Luke Burgess into their European tour squad.

The former Wallabies halves partners both play in France which precludes them from selection under the long-held ARU policy of only picking Australian-based players.

Read more on:    wallabies  |  quade cooper  |  rugby

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 PSL season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Who do you think will contest the 2017 Currie Cup final?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.