Pocock defends partnership with Hooper

Mon, 05 Sep 2016 15:15

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Wallaby loose forward David Pocock has defended his partnership with Michael Hooper in Australia's back row.

Australia's loose forward combination has received a lot of criticism in recent weeks because of their lack of height.

The Wallabies have struggled in the line-outs against the All Blacks in recent weeks and there has been renewed calls for the team to add more height in the back row.

However, Pocock feels there is no need to break up his partnership with Hooper.

"I've really enjoyed playing alongside Hoops [Hooper]. I think he's probably got a lot of my John Eales Medal votes," Pocock told rugby,com.au.

"I feel like he gets through a huge amount of work and really contributes and he's a real leader within the team.

“I mean we'll leave those comments and speculation to others.

"For us as players, we're trying to improve that combination and get out there and be the best back row we can, individually and as a group."

Pocock added: "I think most teams are still looking to have that on the ball presence," he said.

"A lot of players across the field are starting to get a lot better at it - a few props, hookers, some of the outside backs.

"[When we played] against England, they had a number of guys who were getting good turnovers against us, the All Blacks pressure the ball with their second rowers, Sam Cane's pretty handy in that area too.

"So, I think there's still definitely a role for it - a lot of it depends on the amount of space that the opposition team gives in that area."

Australia's opponents on Saturday, the Springboks, have their own selection dilemma for the openside flank role with Jaco Kriel putting pressure on Francois Louw for a starting berth.

However, for Pocock, both players will pose a big threat.

"I think they're both outstanding," he said.

"I think their timing's really good and they're big guys so they're pretty hard to move once they get onto the ball.

"I guess that's up to their coaches as to who they think's going to be better against us but both are really big threats."

Source: rugby.com.au

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 27 April 2018
Hurricanes v Sunwolves 07h35 Wellington
Stormers v Rebels 13h00 Newlands
Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons 18h45 Welford Road
Sat, 28 April 2018
Reds v Lions 05h05 Suncorp Stadium
Blues v Jaguares 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Crusaders 09h45 Canberra
Kings v Cheetahs 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 14h00 Sandy Park
Worcester Warriors v Harlequins 14h00 Sixways
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
Connacht v Leinster 14h05 Sportsground
Dragons v Scarlets 14h05 Rodney Parade
Bulls v Highlanders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Treviso v Zebre 16h00 Stadio Monigo
Cardiff Blues v Ospreys 16h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Munster v Ulster 16h35 Thomond Park
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Myreside
Sun, 29 April 2018
London Irish v Saracens 14h00 Madejski Stadium
Wasps v Northampton Saints 14h00 Ricoh Arena
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 22 April 2018
Racing Metro v Munster 27 | 22
Brumbies v Jaguares 20 | 25
Sat, 21 April 2018
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 36 | 15
Zebre v Ospreys 37 | 14
Sharks v Stormers 24 | 17
Leinster v Scarlets 38 | 16
Bulls v Rebels 28 | 10
Reds v Chiefs 12 | 36
Crusaders v Sunwolves 33 | 11
Fri, 20 April 2018
Waratahs v Lions 0 | 29
Blues v Highlanders 16 | 34
Sun, 15 April 2018
Saracens v Bath 41 | 6
London Irish v Exeter Chiefs 5 | 45
Sat, 14 April 2018
Leinster v Treviso 15 | 17
Kings v Cardiff Blues 12 | 45
RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
New Zealand 6 6 0 0 28
Australia 6 2 2 2 15
South Africa 6 2 2 1 14
Argentina 6 0 0 6 0