Rugby Championship
Cooper left out of Wallabies squad
ESPN Staff
August 14, 2012
The Reds' Quade Cooper warms up for his side's latest Super Rugby outing, Reds training session, Ballymore, Brisbane, Australia, July 12, 2012
Quade Cooper will be forced to wait for his Wallabies return © PA Photos
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Players/Officials: Berrick Barnes | Quade Cooper

Quade Cooper has been omitted from Australia's 22-man squad for Saturday's Bledisloe Cup clash with New Zealand.

Incumbent No. 10 Berrick Barnes has been selected, with half-back Nick Phipps and recalled outside back Drew Mitchell the only backs named on Australia's bench. Cooper has played just five Super Rugby games since returning from knee surgery, and coach Robbie Deans insists he is not yet ready for the international stage.

"Berrick played very well through June and we had good continuity prior to the mishap with Pat McCabe, so it was pretty straightforward," Deans said.

"There's not a lot of certainty in this industry, [but] I've got no doubt [Cooper will] get an opportunity again, absolutely."

Other noteable selections include a second Test starting role for Dave Dennis, a move from the side to the back of the scrum for Scott Higginbotham and a return to a starting position for Anthony Fainga'a.

Australia: Kurtley Beale, Adam Ashley-Cooper, Rob Horne, Anthony Faingaa, Digby Ioane, Berrick Barnes, Will Genia, Scott Higginbotham, David Pocock (c), Dave Dennis, Nathan Sharpe, Sitaleki Timani, Sekope Kepu, Tatafu Polota Nau, Benn Robinson.

Replacements: Stephen Moore, James Slipper, Rob Simmons, Radike Samo, Michael Hooper, Nick Phipps, Drew Mitchell

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