After becoming the Reds’ highest Super Rugby points-scorer, Quade Cooper is looking to push for Michael Lynagh’s 1166-point state record.
Quade Cooper has set his sights on eclipsing five-eighth great Michael Lynagh’s all-time points-scoring record for Queensland.
Cooper became the Reds’ highest Super Rugby points-scorer, breaking Elton Flatley’s mark of 629, by kicking seven from 10 for an 18-point haul in Friday night’s crucial 43-33 win over the Cheetahs.
The Wallabies’ five-eighth spoke of his pride at gaining the record after the attacking frenzy and reconfirmed his commitment to Queensland by admitting he was spurred on to aim for Lynagh’s state tally of 1166.
“I couldn’t be more excited about being in the history books for something like that for Queensland rugby,” said the 25-year-old, who would need at least four seasons of injury-free rugby to get there.
“It’s not necessarily a goal I went out to achieve but, when you can tick off things like that along the line through working hard, it makes it all worthwhile.
“There’s still Michael Lynagh miles ahead but it gives you something to aim for and, if I can continue to work at my game and score points for the Reds, it will help us as a team, and that’s my sole focus.”
As well as contributing with the boot, Cooper helped set up four of his side’s five tries at Suncorp Stadium.
But like his team’s overall performance, the enigmatic playmaker was far from perfect, gifting Cheetahs flanker Boom Prinsloo a 50m intercept try from an errant cut-out pass and also throwing a string of forward passes.
Both defences and referees are more alert to the 50-Test five-eighth’s flat spiral passes which hold plenty of risk and reward for his team.
Cooper admitted he’d have to improve his technique but promised to keep rolling the dice when the opportunities arose.
“We have to continue to try these things,” he said. “You can’t see an open bloke there and ignore him.
“Sometimes they are not going to come off but we want to improve our game and push our attack.”
Queensland, with nine points from three games, set off for South Africa on Sunday for matches against the Sharks in Durban on Sunday March 16 (AEDT) and the Lions the following Sunday in Johannesburg.
Coach Richard Graham named a 27-man squad on Saturday for the tour.
The squad features the group of 23 who defeated the Cheetahs, along with Ben Lucas, Lachie Turner, Albert Anae and Dave McDuling.
Qld squad for two-week South African tour:
Ben Daley, Greg Holmes, Jono Owen, James Slipper, Albert Anae, Saia Fainga’a, James Hanson, James Horwill (capt), Dave McDuling, Ed O’Donoghue, Rob Simmons, Liam Gill, Eddie Quirk, Beau Robinson, Jake Schatz, Nick Frisby, Will Genia, Quade Cooper, Ben Lucas, Anthony Fainga’a, Chris Feauai-Sautia, Mike Harris, Ben Tapuai, Rod Davies, Dom Shipperley, Aidan Toua, Lachie Turner.