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Drew Mitchell on Quade Cooper: “The pressure’s really on Bernard Foley”

Former Wallaby Drew Mitchell has told Macquarie Sports Radio that he thinks Quade Cooper’s resurgence at the Melbourne Rebels this season will result in a World Cup call up for the Wallabies later this year.

“I think Quade Cooper will definitely feature at the World Cup,” Mitchell said.

“Now I don’t know if he’s going to wear the 10 [jersey]. He may deputise with Bernard Foley.

“It’s not only spark that he’s got in his game, also he’s started to get a bit more maturity in his game as well so it’s not as high risk as perhaps some people thought it was years ago bringing Quade on with 10 or 15 [minutes] to go and the game’s in the balance.”

Mitchell also sent a warning to Wallabies flyhalf Bernard Foley by highlighting the combination Cooper has with club teammate Will Genia – who is likely to be the starting halfback for the national team.

“I think the pressure’s really on Bernard Foley this year and it probably hasn’t been for the last few years in terms of his position being under as much threat as it is,” Mitchell said.

“Now that Quade Cooper’s not only playing well but playing well with the starting halfback of the Wallabies [Will Genia].”

The Cooper-Genia combination wasn’t the only one the former Wallabies flyer thought was crucial:

“I think it’s really important for players within a backline to have combinations and we saw many years ago – 2011 when the Reds won the competition – Quade Cooper had a really good combination with Digby Ioane on the wing and that’s the same sort of thing that’s starting to happen with Quade and Marika [Koroibete].

“Over the course of the season I think we’ll see that develop. And I think that’s going to be really important.

“You not only need combinations at 9 and 10 or your centres, you need the ones with a winger and a 9 or a winger and a 10 just to make sure they know they’re popping up and they just know how each other play.”

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