The Wallabies captain will not play in Argentina: He made it clear that he is not in the right mental state to enter the field
Michael Hooper will not play the opening match of the 2022 rugby tournament between Australia and Argentina on Saturday in Mendoza. The Wallabies captain has left the Australian haven and returned home after manager Dave Rennie was informed that he was not in a suitable state of mind to play rugby.
Hopper was selected as the 15th starter after training regularly during the week. On Thursday night, the Australian winger later admitted to the machine that he was not ready to lead the team on the pitch in Mendoza against Pumas.
Then Huber himself issued statements regarding his decision. “Although it was not an easy choice, I know it is the right thing for me and the team to do now. Throughout my career I have been putting the team at the forefront of everything, but now I don’t feel like I can live up to my responsibilities as a captain.”
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Dave Rainey, at a press conference, said Hopper had been hiding his problems and that he had shown “great courage in explaining his mental state”. For Renee Now, “The concern is her health. It was a simple decision to let him go home, where he would get the most support. […] He spoke in front of the team, which takes a lot of courage, and told them he was not feeling well, that he thought it would be best for him and them to come back to Australia.”
Hopper, who has 118 caps to date with the national team, will be replaced in 7th place by winger Fraser McCrite and captain James Slipper. It is not yet clear when he will be absent.
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