Wallabies provide latest update on Michael Hooper
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Australia head coach Dave Rennie has confirmed that regular captain Michael Hooper will not return for the rest of the Rugby Championship season.
Hooper withdrew from the Wallabies squad ahead of the Rugby Championship opener against the Los Pumas in Argentina due to personal reasons.
At the time, the regular captain revealed he wasn’t in the right mindset to lead or represent the country and consequently missed the two Tests against the Los Pumas.
Speaking to reporters Rennie confirmed that whilst the flank is improving, he will not feature in the immediate future.
“I’ve had plenty of contact with Hoops, I’m not going to comment on where he’s at and what that looks like, we’re not looking to include him in the rest of the Rugby Championship,” Rennie told reporters.
“We’ll make decisions beyond that, but certainly not looking to rush him in. But he’s certainly on the improve.”
Reds flank Fraser McReight has stepped into the role in his absence, once again named at flank for Saturday’s clash at a sold-out Allianz Stadium.
Wallabies prop James Slipper has taken over the captain’s armband.
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Looking at the opposition, Rennie remained on guard for a fightback from the Springboks, making a raft of changes as they look to keep their Rugby Championship hopes alive.
“They made changes, I suspect some are due to form and some injury, we’ve been through that so you focus on what you’ve got and what we know is it’s still a quality Springboks side,” he added.
“There’s a little bit of youth and energy included so we’re well aware of the threat they pose.”