A tough test awaits on Cheika's Wallabies

Tue, 04 Oct 2016 09:48
Large quade cooper 800

IN THE SPOTLIGHT: The Wallabies playmaker Quade Cooper admits Australia have to improve their attack when facing an Argentina side keen for revenge at Twickenham Stadium in London.

The Wallabies are preparing for a scorned Argentina side hellbent on exacting revenge for their Rugby World Cup semifinal exit at the hands of Michael Cheika's men.

The two sides will face off at the venue of their World Cup showdown, Twickenham Stadium, in their final Rugby Championship clash of the year.

And key Wallabies playmaker Quade Cooper says Los Pumas will have revenge on their minds after Australia ended their World Cup with a gritty 29-15 victory in the final four.

"They're going to be a tough side and they're going to want to rectify firstly [a 20-36 loss to Australia in] Perth and also the semifinal," Cooper said.

"They played well and left a few opportunities out on the field as well.

"So they're going to come out all guns blazing but we understand that,"

What Cooper won't find acceptable is a failure to capitalise on scoring chances, as happened in last weekend's loss to South Africa.

"They were obviously doing everything they could, putting their bodies on the line.

"But we blew a lot of opportunities. We've just got to be better.

"It's not necessarily us being frantic, but just taking opportunities when they come rather than waiting an extra phase to be a little bit more safe,"

A key figure in the hard-nosed determination Australia will need to feed off in order to secure a victory could well be damaging No.8 Leroy Houston.

The power-running back row forward was only called into Cheika's squad on Monday following the loss of Sean McMahon to an ankle injury on top of the hand injury suffered by regular No.8 David Pocock.

But even before joining the team for their first training session on Monday, Houston was making his mark felt. His first action when arriving into camp was to apologise to his teammates for the carnage he expects to unleash at training this week - all in order to catch the eye of Cheika and win a maiden Test cap.

"Because he's going to go very hard in training," Cooper smiled.

"If he knocks a few of us on our backs he's already said his apologies for that.

"As a person, he's such a genuine bloke. He's got such a kind heart.

"When we come to training, he's going to be out there basically trying to take our heads off because he wants this spot.

"That's what it means to the whole team, but a guy like him coming in ... that's what he can add to the team,"

Sources: sbs.com.au & AAP

 

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sun, 19 February 2017
Sale Sharks v Wasps 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 15h00 Kingston Park
Mon, 20 February 2017
CUT-Ixias v Shimlas 14h45 Bloemfontein
Maties v NMMU-Madibaz 16h30 Stellenbosch
UWC v Rhodes 16h30 Cape Town
TUT v WSU 16h30 Pretoria
NWU-Pukke v UCT-Ikeys 16h30 Potchefstroom
UKZN-Impi v Fort Hare 16h30 Durban
UJ v UP-Tuks 17h00 Johannesburg
Thu, 23 February 2017
Rebels v Blues 08h45 Melbourne
Fri, 24 February 2017
Highlanders v Chiefs 06h35 Dunedin
Reds v Sharks 09h00 Brisbane
Harlequins v Leicester Tigers 17h45 Twickenham Stoop
Edinburgh v Cardiff Blues 19h05 Myreside
Dragons v Leinster 19h30 Rodney Parade
Munster v Scarlets 19h35 Thomond Park
Sat, 25 February 2017
Sunwolves v Hurricanes 04h15 Tokyo
Crusaders v Brumbies 06h35 Christchurch
Waratahs v Force 08h45 Allianz Park
Saracens v Sale Sharks 12h45 Allianz Park
Exeter Chiefs v Newcastle Falcons 13h00 Sandy Park
Northampton Saints v Worcester Warriors 13h00 Franklin's Gardens
Cheetahs v Lions 13h05 Bloemfontein
Scotland v Wales 14h25 BT Murrayfield
Kings v Jaguares 15h15 Port Elizabeth
Ireland v France 16h50 Aviva Stadium
Stormers v Bulls 17h30 Cape Town
Sun, 26 February 2017
Bristol v Bath 11h00 Ashton Gate
Wasps v Gloucester 12h30 Ricoh Arena
Treviso v Connacht 12h30 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Zebre v Ulster 12h30 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors 13h05 Liberty Stadium
RUGBY CHAMPIONSHIP
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
New Zealand 6 6 0 0 30
Australia 6 3 0 3 14
South Africa 6 2 0 4 10
Argentina 6 1 0 5 5