Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Cooper back to bolster Reds

Australian star Quade Cooper looks set to return from injury in time to bolster the Queensland Reds ahead of the second half of the Super Rugby season. The versatile back suffered a series knee injury during last year’s World Cup, resulting in lengthy lay-off following surgery. Now it looks as though Cooper is back in contention for selection for the Reds, who are still in a decent position to mount a genuine defence of their title despite not having the Aussie international available to them until now.

Many believed Cooper’s absence for the first half of the season would put paid to Queensland’s chances of challenging for the title, although a strong start to the campaign has put the club within 10 points of the Chiefs at the top of the table. The return of Cooper will coincide with the Reds tour of New Zealand, which will be a critical part of the season if Queensland are going to get themselves into contention.

Injuries to Cooper, along with a host of other senior players, gave Ewen McKenzie’s men an uphill battle to compete in the league, something the head coach has managed to get out of his depleted squad. While the club have managed to claim some impressive victories, they have also suffered heavy defeats at the hands of the Bulls and the Western Force.

An ability to bounce back from defeats has shown McKenzie that his squad have plenty of character, and in Ben Tapuai they have a player capable of finishing chances when presented with them. Will Genia’s kicking is up there with the league’s best and the scrum-half will have a major role to play in Cooper’s return to the side.

The duo built up a great partnership over the past few years, both with the Reds and Australia, and Queensland will be hoping the two can pick up where they left off last year and help the club cling on to their league title. To check the latest Rugby odds according to betfair.com please visit http://betting.betfair.com/rugby-bet/

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