Wallabies: Ashley Cooper backs fill-in captain

WALLABIES winger Adam Ashley-Cooper has given a ringing endorsement of fill-in captain Michael Hooper ahead of the second Test against France in Melbourne on Saturday night.

With new skipper Stephen Moore out injured for the rest of the year, Ashley-Cooper is now the most-experienced Wallaby with 92 caps.

And he said he had seen plenty of positive attributes regarding the leadership abilities of openside flanker Hooper who will become the fourth-youngest Wallaby captain at just 22. He is also the second-youngest player in the Wallabies squad - Waratahs team mate Will Skelton is six months younger than Hooper.

"What you see is what you get with Michael Hoops. He goes out there and performs consistently well," Ashley-Cooper told reporters in Melbourne yesterday.

The French will bring in giant centre Mathieu Bastareaud in an effort to improve their attack.


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