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Leaders watch as former golden boy rages

Frustrated ... Quade Cooper.

Frustrated ... Quade Cooper. Photo: Getty Images

IF QUADE COOPER'S intention was to stir the thick and soupy rugby pot during delicate contract negotiations he well and truly hit his mark.

The injured Wallabies five-eighth's calls have been received with wide-eyed intrigue by the rugby community, members of which are waiting for the frustrated talent to fire the next missive in his as-yet one-sided war with the most powerful figures in Australian rugby.

Whether or not his comments about the ''toxic'' state of the sport are motivated by a desire to get the upper hand in negotiations with the Australian Rugby Union is unclear.

The ARU and the Wallabies are keeping quiet in the face of their former golden boy's sustained attacks while, beyond the briefest of ''not happy'' comments from Reds chief executive Jim Carmichael, Queensland have also shut up shop.

But the world, or at least the ever-dwindling pool of Australian rugby fans, coaches, players and officials, is watching. And a surprising number of them are on Cooper's side.

''I'm a big advocate of Quade's, and I think he's integral to the Wallabies going forward,'' former Reds coach Phil Mooney said. ''Clearly he's frustrated, so I think it gives people an opportunity to investigate it further within the Wallabies and the ARU. The way he aired those feelings isn't the way I would have done it, but that's the way of the world now.''

Mooney, like many others, has read with interest the coverage of Cooper's deteriorating relationship with the organisation that nurtured, championed and profited from his talents over the past four years.

Mooney said Cooper had broken with accepted protocol in ''pretty much all team sport'' but was too good a player to let go.

''Quade is one of those people that polarises opinion; you're either very much in his camp or very much out of his camp,'' he said.

''I'm someone who's very much in his camp. When the Reds won the Super Rugby title he was at the forefront of that, and I certainly believe as far as the Wallabies are concerned, that he's integral to them moving forward. He's the best 10 in the country, and you build a team around blokes like that.''

The storm also caught the eye of Wallabies legend David Campese and Brumbies assistant coach Laurie Fisher. Both joined enthralled rugby fans to mention the saga on Twitter, Campese congratulating Cooper, while Fisher said: ''I don't know whether he's brave or foolish but he's stating an opinion, and some will agree and some will disagree. There are interesting times ahead.''

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Rugby World Cup 2015

Round 1
Sat, 19 SepTimes shown AEST
ENG 35vs FJI 11 Report Stats
TGA 10vs GEO 17 Report Stats
IRE 50vs CAN 7 Report Stats
Sun, 20 SepTimes shown AEST
SAF 32vs JPN 34 Report Stats
FRA 32vs ITA 10 Report Stats
SAM 25vs USA 16 Report Stats
WAL 54vs URU 9 Report Stats
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NZL 26vs ARG 16 Report Stats
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SCO 45vs JPN 10 Report Stats
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NZL 58vs NAM 14 Report Stats
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ARG 54vs GEO 9 Report Stats
ITA 23vs CAN 18 Report Stats
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SAF 46vs SAM 6 Report Stats
ENG 25vs WAL 28 Report Stats
AUS 65vs URU 3 Report Stats
SCO 39vs USA 16 Report Stats
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IRE 44vs ROM 10 Report Stats
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TGA 35vs NAM 21 Report Stats
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WAL 23vs FJI 13 Report Stats
FRA 41vs CAN 18 Report Stats
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NZL 43vs GEO 10 Report Stats
SAM 5vs JPN 26 Report Stats
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SAF 34vs SCO 16 Report Stats
ENG 13vs AUS 33 Report Stats
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ARG 45vs TGA 16 Report Stats
IRE 16vs ITA 9 Report Stats
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CAN 15vs ROM 17 Report Stats
FJI 47vs URU 15 Report Stats
Thu, 08 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 64vs USA 0 Report Stats
NAM 16vs GEO 17 Stats
Sat, 10 OctTimes shown AEDT
NZL 47vs TGA 9 Report Stats
Sun, 11 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAM 33vs SCO 36 Report Stats
AUS 15vs WAL 6 Report Stats
ENG 60vs URU 3 Stats
ARG 64vs NAM 19 Report Stats
Mon, 12 OctTimes shown AEDT
ITA 32vs ROM 22 Report Stats
FRA 9vs IRE 24 Report Stats
USA 18vs JPN 28 Report Stats
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Round 2
Sun, 18 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 23vs WAL 19 Stats
NZL 62vs FRA 13 Report Stats
IRE 20vs ARG 43 Report Stats
Mon, 19 OctTimes shown AEDT
AUS 35vs SCO 34 Stats
Sun, 25 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 18vs NZL 20 Stats
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ARG 15vs AUS 29 Stats
Sat, 31 OctTimes shown AEDT
SAF 24vs ARG 13 Stats
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NZL 34vs AUS 17 Stats
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Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Australia 4 4 0 0 106 17
Wales 4 3 1 0 49 13
England 4 2 2 0 58 11
Fiji 4 1 3 0 -17 5
Uruguay 4 0 4 0 -196 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
South Africa 4 3 1 0 120 16
Scotland 4 3 1 0 43 14
Japan 4 3 1 0 -2 12
Samoa 4 1 3 0 -55 6
USA 4 0 4 0 -106 0
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
New Zealand 4 4 0 0 125 19
Argentina 4 3 1 0 109 15
Georgia 4 2 2 0 -70 8
Tonga 4 1 3 0 -60 6
Namibia 4 0 4 0 -104 1
View all
Rugby World Cup 2015
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Ireland 4 4 0 0 99 18
France 4 3 1 0 57 14
Italy 4 2 2 0 -14 10
Romania 4 1 3 0 -69 4
Canada 4 0 4 0 -73 2
View all

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