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Wallabies tweet: Hooper to head home Thursday, misses Wales game

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Getty Images)

Former Australia captain Michael Hooper has been ruled out of the Wallabies’ Autumn Nations Series clash against Wales on Saturday. Flanker Hooper, who has won more than 120 caps, presented with concussion symptoms after playing a full part in Australia’s 13-10 loss to Ireland last weekend. The Wallabies said that 31-year-old Hooper would return home on Thursday.

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A message posted on the official Wallabies Twitter account read: “Hoops is out of this weekend’s Test against Wales. He’ll head back to home soil on Thursday. See you next year, Hoops.”

Hooper is the latest player to be sidelined during a punishing European tour that has seen successive defeats against France, Italy and Ireland. A number of his colleagues had already been ruled out of the Wales encounter in Cardiff, including centre Hunter Paisami, scrum-half Nic White and prop Taniela Tupou.

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According to Wallabies officials, Hooper was ruled out on Monday after presenting with concussion symptoms but this wasn’t confirmed by the time fellow back-rower Jed Holloway addressed the media on Tuesday in Wales.

Instead, Holloway spoke about a casualty list that at the time affected Tupou (suspected ruptured achilles tendon), Paisami (medial ligament damage), outside back Andrew Kellaway, No8 Rob Valetini, hooker Dave Porecki (concussion) and White (concussion).

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“We are gutted for any guy we lose but Taniela in particular, he has had a fair run of injuries this year and genuinely put in the hard yards to try and get himself best available and find that form which he’s known for,” said Holloway about Tupou, who is now facing a race to be fit in time for the World Cup next September.

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“To see him go down the way he did was pretty gut-wrenching but we know our medical staff here and doing everything they can to get the boys ready. We have just had a rough trot but we need to lick our wounds and go again because we have got a big Test at Principality this weekend.

“What the injuries provide is a huge opportunity for guys coming in and those guys need to take it and we need to get a result.

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