Quade Cooper has returned from a five-month shoulder injury layoff with a cameo for Brisbane City in their 29-13 win over Queensland Country.
Quade Cooper has returned from a five-month shoulder injury layoff with a spritely 20-minute cameo for Brisbane City in their 29-13 win over Queensland Country.
The 50-Test veteran entered the fray on Sunday to a warm reception from the 5000-strong Ballymore crowd and in typical Cooper fashion, his first involvement was a classy one.
After Chris Kuridrani scored just inside the right-hand sideline, Cooper stepped up and cooly slotted the conversion before guiding his side home in the final quarter of the match.
“I was very excited to just get out there and be a part of a team again,” Cooper said post-match.
“Just to get out there with the group and make a few tackles, get a few touches and get hit a few times is what these games are about when you’re coming back and to get the win – first and foremost – has helped push us further towards the finals.
“The shoulder has felt good all week… I was more worried about trying to contribute to the team.”
The win for Brisbane City means they have leapfrogged the NSW Country Eagles into second place on the competition ladder, leaving them trailing only the Melbourne Rising.
The Melbourne outfit were too strong for the UC Vikings on Thursday night at AAMI Park, as they kept their undefeated record intact.
Tries to Jack Debreczeni, Telusa Veainu, Paul Alo-Emile and Mitch Inman inside the first half-hour was enough to earn the home side record their sixth straight win, despite a resilient second-half effort from the Vikings.
The second draw in as many weeks was played out at Brookvale Oval between the North Harbour Rays and the Greater Sydney Rams, as a penalty goal to Rams replacement flyhalf Hamish Angus after the siren levelled scores at 34-all.
In the late game for round six of the competition, the Perth Spirit comprehensively defeated the winless Sydney Stars in Joondalup, 63-21.
It was a much-needed bonus-point win for one of the pre-season competition favourites, which keeps them in contention for a finals berth with just three rounds remaining.