Quade Cooper

Quade Cooper sheds light on NZ-born teammate's struggle after passing Australian citizenship test

Shortly after sitting the test in Japan, where he plays for the Hanazono Kintetsu Liners, Cooper took to social media to reveal he passed but not before shedding light on the plight of former teammate Joe Tomane, who Cooper said was "locked out" of Australia this year and forced to fly to New Zealand.

 

Born in Palmerston North before moving to Australia at a young age, Tomane played for the Melbourne Storm and Gold Coast Titans in the NRL prior to switching codes, where he earned 17 caps for the Wallabies between 2012-2015.

Wallabies' NZ-born star Quade Cooper finally set to become Australian citizen

The New Zealand-born 33-year-old, who has played 75 tests for Australia, had been unhappy that his four previous applications for citizenship had been rejected because of the unique difficulties he faced meeting the requirements as an international sportsman.

Yet after the Australian government changed eligibility rules to ensure "distinguished applicants" like him could be made citizens, Cooper is now taking the test again in Japan where he's currently playing for Hanazono Kintetsu Liners.

Cooper unsure of future

The experienced first-five was brought out of the international wilderness to play in the last four matches of the Rugby Championship, helping the Wallabies to two victories over world champions South Africa and two over Argentina.

Under World Rugby regulations, Cooper is eligible for release by his club for the November tests against Scotland, England and Wales, but Australia could not demand his services for Saturday's test against Japan.

Cooper remains uncertain if Test versus Japan is his last for 2021

Cooper is set to line up for the Oita Test on Saturday but may miss the remaining three Tests against Scotland, England and Wales.

The 33-year-old said a decision on his playing status was “above my pay grade” and he would support his club after it allowed him to join the Wallabies squad during the Rugby Championship. Cooper has played two seasons with the ambitious Liners, helping them back into Japan’s Top League competition for 2022.

Rule change gives Cooper shot at citizenship

New Zealand-born Cooper moved to Australia as an early teen and has earned 71 test caps with the Wallabies but his citizenship applications have been repeatedly declined.

His starring role in the Wallabies' 28-26 win over world champions South Africa on Sunday triggered calls on social media for the government to give the 33-year-old citizenship.

And on Tuesday, Australia's immigration minister Alex Hawke said authorities had altered eligibility rules which would ease restrictions on overseas-based applicants.

Quade Cooper's emotional tribute to SBW after match-winning heroics

Cooper completed a fairytale return to test rugby over the weekend as he played a starring role in defeating the world champions by landing the match-winning penalty in injury time to clinch a 28-26 victory on the Gold Coast.

Not only did the successful penalty attempt hand the Wallabies their first victory in the Rugby Championship this year, but it vindicated Cooper’s return to the Australian national set-up after a four-year absence from the green and gold jersey.

Quade Cooper headlines five changes to Wallabies side for Springboks

Cooper has been named to start at No 10 for the Wallabies for the first time since 2017, when he made the last of his 70 test appearances against Italy in Brisbane.

Since then, the 33-year-old has endured a turbulent four years that saw him dropped from the Queensland Reds by Brad Thorn in 2018, which was followed by a one-off spell with the Melbourne Rebels a year later.

Cooper’s move south wasn’t enough to win a re-call to the Wallabies squad for the 2019 World Cup, though, and that was enough for him to take up a deal abroad with the Hanazono Kintetsu Liners in Japan.

Dave Rennie hints Quade Cooper could play against All Blacks

Rennie gave Cooper a surprise call-up to the Wallabies squad ahead of their Bledisloe Cup and Rugby Championship campaigns last month after incumbent pivot James O’Connor suffered a groin complaint during Super Rugby Trans-Tasman.

Cooper hasn’t played for the Wallabies since 2017, and the 70-test veteran watched on from the stands as the Wallabies were defeated in successive tests in Auckland earlier this month as the All Blacks locked the Bledisloe Cup away for a 19th straight year.

Quade Cooper 'pushing hard' to be picked in Bledisloe Cup test

For some, especially those who have delighted in Cooper experiencing defeat and misery in Auckland over the years, it could possibly blow their minds.

The fact Cooper, who hasn’t represented Australia at Eden Park since 2016, is even being considered by coach Dave Rennie’s for the Bledisloe Cup match on Saturday night is hard enough to comprehend.

So the prospect of him helping the team to a victory over the All Blacks, at a ground where the Wallabies haven’t won since 1986, could be too much for a number of parochial New Zealanders to get their heads around.

Quade Cooper to travel to New Zealand with Wallabies for Bledisloe Cup

James O’Connor’s groin injury will prevent the No 10 travelling to New Zealand and with border restrictions set to play havoc with the Wallabies’ upcoming test campaign, Rennie has done the unthinkable by bringing back the 70-test playmaker back into an Australian squad.

Cooper, who recently revealed he has had his application for Australian citizenship turned down four times, will travel to New Zealand with the rest of the team on Friday.