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Quade Cooper suffers neck injury

Reds 13 Rebels 18

Quade Cooper is stretchered off the ground wearing a neck brace.

Quade Cooper is stretchered off the ground wearing a neck brace. Photo: Getty Images

Queensland Reds coach Richard Graham says he doesn’t believe Quade Cooper’s neck injury is serious and the star five-eighth could even play next week against the Brumbies.

Cooper was stretchered off the ground with his neck in a brace in the final minute of the Reds 18-13 trial defeat at the hands of the Melbourne Rebels at Ballymore. He appeared to take a hit to the back before slumping to the turf and calling for medical attention.

There was clear concern over his welfare and Reds doctors took no risks as they slowly loaded him onto a stretcher and carried him from the field.

Kurtley Beale of the Waratahs. Click for more photos

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It looked dire but Graham said he had spoken to Cooper in the dressing rooms and he was in good spirits. He would be taken to hospital for precautionary imaging but there was a chance he could be back in time to meet the Brumbies on Saturday night in their Super Rugby opener.

“He’s alright. He’ll go for a scan as a precaution. Hopefully we’ll get a clearance and move forward,” Graham said.

“I went in there and had a chat to him and he’s in good spirits. There’s no concussion.

“My expectation is that he will (play). He’s alert, he’s talking, he’s disappointed. But it’s what the medical staff have requested.”

It was a nightmare end to a below-par night for the Queenslanders, who failed to fire at the spiritual home of the game north of the border.

After torching the Chiefs last week with some quality attack, the Reds stuttered badly against the physical and well-organised Rebels, who won the collisions and had the home side fumbling to play catch-up.

A late cameo from Aidan Toua, who surely has secured the fullback jersey over Lachie Turner, was a bright spot, as was some wizardry from openside Liam Gill, whose clever chip over the top set up a try for Will Genia.

But overall it was a largely listless effort from the Reds, with far too many errors, penalties conceded at the scrum and missed tackles at crucial moments. Graham wasn’t impressed.

“I thought the first 25 minutes, we delivered a lot of the things we set out to do. Once we came back and dropped the kick off (James Horwill), we went through a period where we were quite flat in attack and defence. There’s a lot of things to work on,” Graham said.

“It was disappointing. Once we got to a 13-0 lead we fell away.”

Gill said it was a frustrating night that has left the Reds with a mountain of work to do before facing the Brumbies in Canberra.

“It was disappointing for us to come out and put that performance forward. We were a bit scrappy, a few things to tighten up. Hopefully it will kick us up the bum and fire us up for next week,” Gill said.

“A couple of years ago we had that big loss to the Waratahs and we bounced back pretty well. Hopefully we can do that next week.”

Blindside flanker Ed Quirk took a knock to the shoulder late in the game but Graham said there were no lingering concerns. Now all eyes rest on Cooper as the clock ticks down to the Super Rugby opening round.

 

12 comments so far

  • Seriously? That's the best you could say about a superbly organised, fit and hungry Rebel performance? Pffffffft.

    Commenter
    Steve B
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    February 14, 2014, 11:40PM
    • @ Steve B

      At the mo.... the team to beat in 2014 !

      Commenter
      Machooka
      Location
      inner west sydney
      Date and time
      February 15, 2014, 3:51PM
  • Good to see the Rebels actually got a mention in one paragraph!!

    Commenter
    trev
    Location
    Torquay
    Date and time
    February 15, 2014, 9:28AM
    • OK, 2 paragraphs!

      Commenter
      trev
      Location
      Torquay
      Date and time
      February 15, 2014, 9:29AM
      • Is it such a surprise that the sports editor of the Brisbane Times would focus more on the injury to the local, incumbent Wallaby playmaker, than a relatively meaningless trial match result? As a matter of interest, how much press did the game get amongst all the NAB Cup "news" in the Melbourne papers?

        Commenter
        Nugget
        Location
        Sydney
        Date and time
        February 15, 2014, 4:43PM
    • QC has finally found his true position - stretcher.

      Commenter
      sod98
      Date and time
      February 15, 2014, 9:34AM
      • @ sod98.. So true, re Nancy. Most of us would be fairly sure he would find himself in that particular position, if Khoder Nasser found him a worthy opponent in his boxing circus, instead of some of the "no named"clowns that he has been up against.

        Commenter
        Muzzo
        Location
        Orange
        Date and time
        February 15, 2014, 12:24PM
      • @ sod98

        Your obvious talents are in need of greater challenges. It would appear from the 'comments' section of the SMH and it's featured 'Rugby Heaven' articles that your replies do you no justice. A la your bent for the apparent bleeding obvious in relation to wit and satire. Surely, if you can find humour in a man being stretchered from the field with a suspected neck injury as a source of mirth then may I suggest a role as a script writer for say.... Underbelly or the ever new and upcoming next part of Scarpelle Corby's life.
        Must be a stretcher or two in either show.... mmmm in there somewhere ?

        Commenter
        Machooka
        Location
        inner west sydney
        Date and time
        February 15, 2014, 4:16PM
      • Seriously guys, I understand that you are no fans of Cooper but having a crack about a bloke being injured is pretty low. If it was McCaw being carried off with a neck injury & Aussies were having a laugh about it you would be up in arms.

        Commenter
        Shane D
        Location
        Perth
        Date and time
        February 15, 2014, 4:52PM
      • Wow, that's low.

        Commenter
        CannonballKoala
        Date and time
        February 15, 2014, 11:16PM

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