Toomua eager for Cooper clash

Tue, 18 Feb 2014 10:43
Large matt toomua

Brumbies flyhalf Matt Toomua is looking forward to testing himself against Quade Cooper, now that the Reds playmaker has been passed fit. 

Brumbies flyhalf Matt Toomua is looking forward to testing himself against Quade Cooper, now that the Reds playmaker has been passed fit. 
 
Cooper has declared that is he "100 percent" fit to play the Super Rugby season opener against the Brumbies on Saturday and it is music to the ears of his number one rival for the Wallabies flyhalf position - Matt Toomua.
 
There was doubt over Cooper's early-season availibility after he injured his neck in the Reds 13-18 loss to the Melbourne Rebels in a warm-up game last week, but he will be fine and the only person happier to hear that than Cooper's teammates might be Toomua himself.
 
"Yeah of course [I want him to play]," said Toomua.
 
"First and foremost because I care about his health. You don't like seeing a guy get taken off on a stretcher."
 
"But it's also about testing yourself against the best," added the 10-times capped Wallaby flyhalf.
 
The duo have been tussling over a No.10 jersey since their Queensland schoolboys days, and the battle stepped up a notch during last year's Test season when Cooper reclaimed the primary playmaking role from Toomua - who had started the season as Wallabies flyhalf incumbent and finished it at inside centre.
 
Toomua said that he and Brumbies scrumhalf Nic White want to prove their worth against the experienced Reds halfback combination of Cooper and Will Genia.
 
"Me and Nic [White] are one of the back-up [Wallabies halfback pairings] so we're trying to push for that selection and trying and prove ourselves.
 
"I don't want to harp on because it's a team effort, but you're definitely lying if you say you don't," he said.
 
The Toomua-Cooper battle is one which sees two contrasting styles pitted against one another.
 
Cooper attracts almost unparalleled media attention through his razzle-dazzle style, while Toomua has built his game around a steady-as-you-go approach that is complemented by a booming right boot and rib-rattling tackles.
 
Limiting Cooper's influence won't be as simple as shooting up in defence and cutting down his space, according to Toomua.
 
"You bring a few guys with you and you don't just do it mindlessly. 
 
"[With] guys like Quade and Will [Genia], you can't defend individually because you won't get them - it's got to be within a system.
 
"We've got a few ideas how we'll do that. It's definitely something that's been spoken about," Toomua added.
 
AAP
There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 20 October 2017
Scarlets v Bath 18h45 Parc y Scarlets
Sat, 21 October 2017
Australia v New Zealand 09h00 Brisbane
Glasgow Warriors v Leinster 12h00 Scotstoun
Sharks v Blue Bulls 12h30 Durban
Treviso v Toulon 14h15 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Western Province v Golden Lions 15h00 Cape Town
Clermont Auvergne v Northampton Saints 15h15 Stade Marcel-Michelin
Leicester Tigers v Castres 16h30 Welford Road
Munster v Racing Metro 16h30 Thomond Park
Saracens v Ospreys 18h45 Allianz Park
Sun, 22 October 2017
Montpellier v Exeter Chiefs 12h00 Altrad Stadium
La Rochelle v Ulster 14h15 Paris
Wasps v Harlequins 16h30 Ricoh Arena
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 15 6 0 9 34
Force 15 6 0 9 26
Reds 15 4 0 11 21
Waratahs 15 4 0 11 19
Rebels 15 1 1 13 9
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 15 14 0 1 63
Hurricanes 15 12 0 3 58
Chiefs 15 12 1 2 57
Highlanders 15 11 0 4 51
Blues 15 7 1 7 37
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 15 10 0 5 43
Cheetahs 15 4 0 11 21
Bulls 15 4 0 11 20
Sunwolves 15 2 0 13 12
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 15 14 0 1 65
Sharks 15 9 1 5 42
Jaguares 15 7 0 8 33
Kings 15 6 0 9 28