Cooper has no time for keyboard warriors

International
by Sam Phillips

Quade Cooper is well accustomed to the online vitriol that professional athletes deal with on a daily basis, perhaps more so than any other Wallaby.

Cooper has been a polarising figure through the entirety of his career and while the character assassinations that he cops are unfounded, it is very much part of the job in the social media age.

The mercurial flyhalf understands that the constant negativity comes with being a professional athlete but he also won't cop "keyboard warriors" that dish personal barbs from afar.

"It's easy for people to sit behind a keyboard and throw barbs, sit behind a keyboard and tell you you're not doing your job," Cooper said.

"When you come out here and see the hard work that goes in - nobody goes out there to lose."

Jeff Horn's underdog status is an inspiration for the Wallabies. Photo: RUGBY.com.au/Stuart WalmsleyCooper was flanked by WBO World Welterweight title contender Jeff Horn - who will fight Manny Pacquiao on July 2 - and used his counterpart's underdog tag as a way to articulate his point.

"If you imagine a boxing fight and the challenge like what Jeff has ahead of him - if he was to go down and lose, people throw barbs at him and that's very unfair," Cooper said.

"When he wins that fight, he'll be able to stand tall, stand proud and understand that has gone in, he's done that for himself.

"Still, there will be people that sit back and say Manny was old and things like that.

"There's always people that are going to do that and I have no respect for that.

"I have respect for people that stick with you throughout the ride, through the ups and downs, no matter the result."


The Wallabies as a whole have felt the social media hit in recent days, most notably after a viral fan post from Lismore's Jack Quigley became the centre of Monday's news cycle and was pinned up to the walls of the team's change rooms in Brisbane.

When asked if his comments were in direct relation to Quigley's vpost, Cooper said he could understand the fan's position if it was coming from a place of passion.

"To see the passion from fans like that is great - it's great to see that the fans are hurting as well because they go through the tough times as well," he said.

"But it's a different story when you sit behind a keyboard and start throwing barbs at people.

"I've got no respect for it when people are going out and giving it everything they can in their job, their profession, it's disappointing to see that."

The Wallabies take on Italy on Saturday, kicking off at 3pm AEST, LIVE on FOX SPORTS and via RUGBY.com.au RADIO. Buy tickets here.

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