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Trio of stars better suited in Wallabies squad: Brisbane City's NRC coach Nick Stiles

Quade Cooper could be in line for game time with Brisbane City in the NRC in bid to return to the Wallabies.

Quade Cooper could be in line for game time with Brisbane City in the NRC in bid to return to the Wallabies. Photo: Getty Images

Former Wallabies prop and Brisbane City head coach Nick Stiles could be rubbing his hands in delight at the thought of having three contracted Wallabies on his National Rugby Championship roster - but if all things go to plan, he hopes they don’t play.

Stiles, a loosehead prop who played 12 Tests for the Wallabies from 2001-2002, hopes that James Horwill, Will Genia and Quade Cooper will be all back where he feels they belong in the Wallabies green and gold as soon as possible.

Stiles has lost his trademark prop physique having taken up running half-marathons. But his mind is still very much on the job of rugby as the Queensland Reds forwards coach prepares his Brisbane City for their NRC opener against Sydney City at Ballymore next Thursday.

In the back of his mind he knows there is a chance that Horwill, who missed out on the 23 man Wallabies squad for Saturday’s Bledisloe Cup match in Sydney, Genia and Cooper - who are on the comeback trail from injury - could play for him.

However, in reality, he expects that Genia and Cooper will get some game time.

Asked about the possibility of Horwill donning the Brisbane strip, Stiles said: “He is named in our squad.  It will be more to do [with] what the Wallabies want to do with him.

“Second row is not a position where there is a lot of depth in Australia, and it’s a pretty abrasive position, the second row. I am sure he will be used in the Wallabies sooner than later, but it would be great to have him running around with us.”

However, Stiles has been encouraged by Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie’s policy on allowing the use of Wallabies squad members not being needed for Test duty.

“Ewen has already been very good in his communication with us saying he wants players not involved in the Wallabies to be playing NRC,” Stiles said.

“Guys like Jimmy and other players involved in the Wallabies squad during the week, once it gets to the end of the week if they feel there is a need for them to play, they will push them back to NRC which gives the competition more credibility as well.”

Stiles expects Horwill will have been disappointed by his selection snub.

“Jimmy is a very proud and passionate footballer. He wears his emotions on his chest for everyone to see,” Stiles said.

“Probably the hardest thing is that I reckon he has probably had his most consistent year than what he has had over the last few years.

“He hasn’t been injured. He has played the full season with the Reds.

“So while he would be disappointed, he probably feels he is in a better position to push for section on the back of what he has done for the Reds.

“There is now competition through all positions. James will rise to that competition.”

As for Genia and Cooper, Stiles says the NRC will assist their return from injuries,

“Previously, if they were returning from injuries they would have no rugby to get themselves back to game ready and to be in a position where they could push for Wallabies section. Having this competition is great for those guys,” Stiles said.

“It’s obviously not Super Rugby. It’s not international rugby, but it will be much higher than club rugby.

“And it also gives players from club land an opportunity to play with internationals.”

Stiles understands that right now: “Their main focus is just getting the rehab right.

“We’ve only had limited meetings and training sessions, but they have been involved in those. But as they get closer to a return to play they’ll get more heavily involved.”


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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
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SAF 32vs JPN 34 Report Stats
FRA 32vs ITA 10 Report Stats
SAM 25vs USA 16 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
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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
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SAF 64vs USA 0 Report Stats
NAM 16vs GEO 17 Stats
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NZL 47vs TGA 9 Report Stats
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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
Sun, 01 NovTimes shown AEDT
NZL 34vs AUS 17 Stats
View All Fixtures
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
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