Cooper comes out swinging at training

By Laine Clark,

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20 Have your say

    The boxing ring may sound like the last place to regain your bearings.

    But Queensland Reds director of coaching Ewen McKenzie says Quade Cooper has never appeared more focussed at rugby training despite also throwing himself into pugilism ahead of next month’s boxing debut.

    McKenzie would have been forgiven for being concerned about his social media-loving playmaker juggling a February 8 bout with his Super Rugby pre-season.

    Cooper agreed to fight on the undercard of good mate and fellow sport-hopper Sonny Bill Williams in Brisbane next month before settling his differences with the Australian Rugby Union and signing a two-year deal.

    But McKenzie only had good things to say about boxing’s influence on his star charge who appears ready for a big season after the controversies of 2012 when he made his disillusionment with the Wallabies environment public.

    “He’s been getting his boxing done around normal training. The quality of his rugby training has been outstanding – he seems in a very good space,” MKenzie said on Tuesday.

    “He is highly motivated and very switched on.

    “He is adding a lot not just in terms of the team but also a lot of mentoring around some of the younger guys.

    “And it is the first time since I have known him that he’s had a contract longer than one year – he is fairly settled.”

    McKenzie even believed the confidence gained from boxing would benefit Cooper’s rugby game.

    “If you are going to put yourself out there in front of a big TV audience and a crowd one-on-one …you can’t help think he is getting some benefit from a confidence point of view,” he said.

    But McKenzie cracked a wry smile when asked how Cooper could juggle future boxing bouts.

    “We will have to see how he goes in his first bout,” he said.

    “We will talk after that.”

    Cooper had reportedly knocked out two sparring partners in a week while training away from the Reds gym.

    It may be agreeing with Cooper but recovering Reds captain James Horwill – eyeing a rugby comeback from a hamstring complaint in next month’s pre-season trials – has not caught the boxing bug.

    “I have no aspirations but hopefully he does well,” Horwill said.

    “He certainly enjoys it.

    “I have seen him spar. He might surprise a few people.”

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (20)

    • January 9th 2013 @ 8:05am
      Rob said | January 9th 2013 @ 8:05am | ! Report

      Have the found the malnourished (or serverely overnourished) homeless man for quade to fight yet??

      • January 9th 2013 @ 8:54am
        nickoldschool said | January 9th 2013 @ 8:54am | ! Report

        Have been looking for the bloke who will be fighting him but haven’t found anything yet. Will it be a an unknown ‘real boxer’ or a former football player having a go?

        QC’s PR team is certainly doing their job as we have been hearing from pretty much every media sources that ‘Cooper had reportedly knocked out two sparring partners in a week while training away from the Reds gym.’.

      • January 9th 2013 @ 2:51pm
        David Heidelberg said | January 9th 2013 @ 2:51pm | ! Report

        They are scouring the retirement homes and halfway houses as we speak.

    • January 9th 2013 @ 9:29am
      The Grafter said | January 9th 2013 @ 9:29am | ! Report

      Its not even on boxrec so what does that tell you.

      It will be interesting to see how many mugs pay
      for this farce on Main Event.

      As a boxing purist, and regular at the fights, I certainly wont be.

    • Roar Guru

      January 9th 2013 @ 10:03am
      Wally James said | January 9th 2013 @ 10:03am | ! Report

      Cooper mentoring someone? You have to be kidding me.

      • January 9th 2013 @ 1:59pm
        Red Kev said | January 9th 2013 @ 1:59pm | ! Report

        Learning the correct techniques for jimmying locks and swiping stuff is an important skill!

    • January 9th 2013 @ 6:07pm
      The Grafter said | January 9th 2013 @ 6:07pm | ! Report

      Well said R K ๐Ÿ™‚

    • January 9th 2013 @ 8:09pm
      chuck said | January 9th 2013 @ 8:09pm | ! Report

      Cathy Hawkins will come out retirement just that Sharon Anyors would want a bigger perse.

    • January 9th 2013 @ 8:40pm
      Skills & Techniques said | January 9th 2013 @ 8:40pm | ! Report

      I heard QC was fighting Nick Nolte.

      Comment left via The Roar’s iPhone app. Download it now [].

      • January 9th 2013 @ 8:49pm
        stillmatic1 said | January 9th 2013 @ 8:49pm | ! Report

        which personality of nicks will it be though skills?

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