First Sevens session for Cooper

Date published: February 3 2016

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Quade Cooper was pleased to get on the training field with Australia's Sevens team on Wednesday, ahead of the Sydney leg of the World Series.

While it is unclear whether he will feature in the home tournament, Toulon back Cooper believes a session with his team-mates was a key first step.

After landing at 6:30am, three hours later the Rio hopeful was running through drills with Andy Friend's team and unsurprisingly the focus was on him.

"It's never a waste of a trip being able to come here and meet the guys," he told rugby.com.au when asked if his arrival so close to the tournament was a wise move.

"The biggest thing with a team sport is being able to fit into the culture, learn and interact with your teammates and be part of that culture.

"I want to spend as much time as I can with them and then join on the trip and all the hard work that they've put in previously and try and do my part to contribute."

Cooper reiterated his stance that he doesn't have an expectation of walking straight into the team, a factor that motivated him to throw himself straight into a session.

"To get off the plane, get out there and do something rather than just sit on the sidelines and watch," he said.

"The best way for me personally to learn is to be out there and doing it firsthand. I’m grateful I was able to train with the guys and looking forward to the next session.

"These guys have worked hard for a number of years to get where they are and I've got to try and learn basically everything in the next few months and for me it's all about work ethic.

"I'll bring work ethic, enthusiasm and eagerness to learn as much as I can."

Meanwhile, head coach Friend stressed the importance of this first step but would not be throwing Cooper into his team unless he was a better option to what they already have.

"The boys have all followed the media and listened to what's going on," he said.

"I'll always be up front with the players so today it humanises Quade Cooper.

"Some of the boys know him, some of the boys don't.

"He's out here now, he's running the same drills, so it's important for them, it's important for him too."

He added: "I fully respect what the players have done to get us to where we've got to.

"If there are other players that are better than what we've got I'm going to look at them.

"If someone's going to be the same as what we've got, we're going to stick with the boys we've got.

"As I said to the boys, it's not a threat, let's see it as an opportunity.

"You've got the position so keep working on your skills and do the best you can do."

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