Cooper to 'lace up' with ARU boss

Fri, 24 Jan 2014 11:19
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Wallaby flyhalf Quade Cooper is not about to give up his dream of making a success of both his rugby and boxing careers.

Mercurial Wallaby flyhalf Quade Cooper is not about to give up his dream of making a success of both his rugby and boxing careers at the same time.

Cooper told Australia Associated Press that he can understand why Australian Rugby Union boss Bill Pulver is opposed to him pursuing boxing.

However, Cooper said the sport of boxing has improved his rugby - a point he hoped to ram home the next time he spoke with Pulver.

Cooper is preparing for his second professional fight - a match-up against 40-year-old Newcastle boxer Warren Tresidder in Brisbane on Wednesday, as part of Anthony Mundine's undercard.

But Pulver has gone sour on the idea, and said boxing could be off the table when they negotiate a new ARU deal with Cooper later this year.

Cooper understood Pulver's view but hoped to twist his arm at their next meeting.

"I can understand his concerns around boxing. It is a very physical and demanding sport and there is a lot of risk," Cooper told AAP on Friday.

"But there are also a lot of benefits. Next time I talk to him I will discuss that with him.

"Every other time I speak to him it is about rugby. So I am looking forward to chatting to him about boxing next time."

Asked if stopping him from boxing would be a deal breaker at their next ARU contract talks, Cooper said: "Right now it is not something for me to worry about, that is up to my manager

"I love playing rugby but I also love boxing. It is something that I think benefits me as an athlete and being the best one that I can be."

Still, Cooper hoped he could get out of the ring as quickly as he did in his impressive professional debut.

Cooper missed the Reds' final Super Rugby trial against the Chiefs to fight Barry Dunnett last February and emerged with a first-round knockout win against the little-know wannabe boxer.

Cooper will next line up against 40-year-old Tresidder - 15 years his senior - who has had one professional bout which ended in a split points loss to former England cricketer Adam Hollioake.

They will appear on the undercard of Mundine's WBA International middleweight title fight against New Zealand's Gunnar Jackson.

"The quicker you can get it over with the better," Cooper said.

"The longer you are in the ring the more opportunity there is for something bad to happen.

"Hopefully I can get in there, show some skill and win by knockout."

'Until I am fighting for Queensland or Australian titles you can't worry about who you are fighting - you just need to strive to become a better boxing."

Source: AAP

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