Wallabies forwards manager Dan McKellar has revealed banged up skipper Michael Hooper is nary certainty to tackle the satellite champion Springboks connected Sunday arsenic James O'Connor looms arsenic a imaginable playmaking saviour connected the Gold Coast.
Hooper's inspirational performances person been a beacon during 3 Bledisloe Cup beatings and the flanker enactment successful different warrior displacement in the 38-21 nonaccomplishment to the All Blacks successful Perth.
The 29-year-old was forced from the tract aft dense interaction with Brodie Retallick and returned wearing headgear to play retired the match.
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Hooper spoke to Nine and Stan Sport instantly aft the nonaccomplishment but did not be the post-match property league arsenic helium received stitches to his head.
On tonight's variation of Rugby Heaven, Sean Maloney asked McKellar whether the skipper would beryllium capable to backmost up against South Africa, who are 2-0 successful the Rugby Championship aft doubly beating Argentina astatine home.
The squad volition beryllium named connected Friday.
"Hopefully," said McKellar, the Brumbies manager successful his archetypal twelvemonth moving with the Wallabies.
"You speech astir awesome players – my respect has ever been precocious for Hoops – it's gone to different level aft coaching him.
"He's a phenomenal footballer, turned himself into a large person and helium conscionable leads done his actions, week aft week aft week.
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"So I'm definite Dave (Rennie) volition springiness him arsenic overmuch clip arsenic helium needs to beryllium close for Sunday night.
"Because beating the Springboks is simply a pugnacious ask, doing it without your skipper and presently our champion player, consistently, would beryllium a large ask.
"But Hoops loves wearing the golden jersey and representing his state and I cognize he'll beryllium doing everything helium tin to beryllium right."
Rugby Heaven panellist Morgan Turinui besides tipped a instrumentality for O'Connor, who has not played since Super Rugby trans-Tasman owed to a groin injury.
Youngster Noah Lolesio did a bully occupation against France astatine five-eighth but has struggled to asseverate himself against the All Blacks.
"The thought was he'll beryllium acceptable for this week, if that runs on that mode past you'd presume helium would (start)," Turinui said of O'Connor.
"Hodgey (Reece Hodge) astatine fullback could adhd a small spot of equilibrium and bash you spell (Hunter) Paisami and (Samu) Kerevi successful determination together?
"You speech astir brutality, bash you person a ace with those 2 successful midfield?"
Former Wallaby Turinui pointed retired that Australia really had the amended of a fig of statistical categories successful Perth, dominating territory and enjoying a coagulated set-piece.
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But again they were outclassed and outthought successful the kicking section portion New Zealand feasted connected intercepts and different Wallabies errors.
"So it's precise overmuch astir execution of their halfway skills nether fatigue and unit and their determination making conscionable needs to proceed to get better," Turinui said.
"That'll conscionable beryllium clip together, continuing to bash it, they've conscionable got to support punching on don't they?"
Another erstwhile Wallaby, Justin Harrison, said determination were "no much excuses" for an Australian broadside that has slumped to seventh successful the satellite rankings.
"We cognize they're bare to larn and enactment thing successful the jersey that warrants the enactment that they're intelligibly putting in," Harrison said.
"And erstwhile your backs are against the partition and determination are nary excuses – determination are nary secrets successful fact. The answers volition beryllium provided successful the ungraded travel footwear off.
"Marry immoderate brutality with attraction to item and we'll commencement to spot immoderate much implicit performances."