Tri-Nations latest (Mon)
6 Sep 2010
Keo.co.za brings you the news from the Tri-Nations.
Bok sharpshooter to stay with Wallabies
Braam van Straaten has been offered a full-time contract with the Wallabies from now until after the 2011 World Cup.
The former Bok player has been involved with the touring Wallabies side as a kicking consultant, a position that’s set to become permanent. Van Straaten told rugby365.com that he will sign a contract with the Australian Rugby Union in October.
Wallabies fullback Kurtley Beale kicked a last minute penalty in Saturday’s 41-39 win over the Springboks. In the aftermath, he said Van Straaten had been a big help to the Aussie kickers.
Cooper to confirm future soon
Quade Cooper says he will make his career decision after the Tri-Nations.
The Wallabies pivot received a lucrative AUS$1.5 million deal from the Parramatta Eels to switch codes to league next season, but it seems recent performances and results will influence him to remain with the Wallabies. However, Cooper said he will only confirm his decision after the final Tri-Nations match against the All Blacks this Saturday.
‘It could but I’m just enjoying playing footy,’ said Cooper. ‘Just getting two games in a row and one more left [against the All Blacks], once we knock that over I’m sure I’ll be able to come up with a decision and hopefully it’s a good one.
‘Coming up against the All Blacks for my first time is going to be great but as a group we’re really looking forward to it. It gives you confidence when the team is going so well and the team comes out on top in such a tight performance like this.’
There was more indication that Cooper will remain in union after Parramatta’s chief executive Paul Osborne admitted that he feels they have lost the race for his signature.
‘I think he’ll stay in rugby I haven’t heard from him for a few weeks. I always thought he’d stay in rugby,’ said Osborne.
Henry praises Wallabies
Graham Henry lauded the Wallabies’ attack after their display in the 41-39 win over the Springboks in Bloemfontein last Saturday.
While the All Blacks head coach plans to secure an unbeaten Tri-Naions campaign as they face the Wallabies in the final fixture this weekend, he complemented his Australian counterparts for their impressive performance against the Boks.
‘It was a good game to watch. I enjoyed it actually and they played particularly well,’ Henry told stuff.co.nz. ‘I think their ability to have a crack, the backs played well, combined well together, stretched the South Africans many times and scored some great tries.
‘They did (leak points) but they won at altitude and it’s the first time for a million years so they’d be very happy about that.’
Alexander slowly recovering
Ben Alexander says he is slowly returning to match fitness as he played his first competitive match last weekend.
The Wallabies loosehead prop played 30 minutes for Eastwood in their 95-10 win over Parramatta in the Shute Shield last Saturday, his first appearance since injurying his knee against Fiji in June.
It is likely he will be ready for international action during the Wallabies’ end-of-year tour.
‘It was a good game to come back to. I blew out a few cobwebs,’ Alexander told smh.com.au. ‘The back is a bit sore, just getting back into the scrummaging side of things, but the fitness feels good. I just have to work on the timing of my defensive work and timing at the breakdown.’