Rogue fan gets the better of Cooper
QUADE Cooper has been struck by a fan - but not the kind that boos him.
The Wallabies five-eighth, currently unwanted in Super Rugby, came off second best while working out in a Queensland gym yesterday.
He ran into a fan hanging off the wall as he moved around the gym
Cooper was told on the eve of the Super Rugby season by new Queensland Reds coach Brad Thorn he wasn't in his plans for 2018 and not to bother coming to training - despite having two more years left to run on his contract.
With the 29-year-old yet to strike a deal with an overseas team, it looks likely he will play out the year for the Souths Rugby Club while still earning a reported $650,000 salary.
Former Wallaby Berrick Barnes, who plays for the Panasonic Wild Knights, said last month it was a "strange" situation.
Barnes also suggested Cooper would be a success in Japan but would struggle to find a Top League club ahead of the new season starting in August.
"It's just hard now with the timing of it all. Basically all the clubs have signed their players," Barnes said.
"If I was him I'd stay playing in club rugby. It sounds like the greatest gig in the world.
"In saying that, he's signed that deal and the Reds owe him that deal.
"The ball's in his court ... I'm not sure what his goals are. But it's interesting watching on from afar."
Cooper was in Auckland over the summer training with All Black and Blues star Sonny Bill Williams.
Another former teammate Digby Ioane said the Reds may live to regret demoting Cooper.
Ioane is close friends with dumped playmaker Cooper, and they played together in the Super Rugby club's 2011 championship year.
Ioane has been in regular contact with Cooper via text message and said he was in a good headspace.
"It's just a bit sad. He didn't do nothing wrong," Ioane said last month.
"I just feel for him, but I guess he's the most expensive club player (in Australia).
"I would take that job, that would be easier on my body.
"Good on him, I hope he stays at Souths and doesn't go anywhere and just proves himself again.
"It's just so weird, I've never seen that before."