Have your say on Quade Cooper's comments
Tim Sheridan is a reporter with Wide World of Sports and an integral member of the National Nine News team.
Normally a fight produces a winner, but Quade Cooper's situation doesn't seem to be helping anyone.
He may not play for the Wallabies again. If so, this will be seen as Robbie Deans closing the door, and if the Wallabies lose their last two Rugby Championship matches, Deans may be in strife as well.
Is this all because Deans backed Cooper before and during 2011 Rugby World Cup? Did the coach's perseverance inadvertently give Quade just enough rope?
Amidst calls for Cooper's sacking, I sat in a number of media conferences in New Zealand as Deans defended his man. By then, Cooper was already New Zealand's public enemy number one after his earlier off-the ball slap and the knee on All Blacks captain Richie McCaw.
In that Eden Park semi-final the All Blacks may have let 14 other Wallabies past them, but they'd have died before Cooper became the 15th.
Call it a series of unfortunate events. This includes Cooper's two injuries - last year and again this year - and of course sundry Twitter rants and a night out in Brisbane he could've done without. More like a perfect storm.
If Deans and Cooper are at such loggerheads on style of play I can't figure out why the coach was so eager to go into bat for the player and keep selecting him.
Given that Matt Giteau didn't get anything like the number of chances as Cooper it seems illogical that Quade could call himself a victim. Anyone who saw the dropped ball, kick out on the full and wayward pass at the start of the clash with Argentina on the Gold Coast would know that's not style of play – it's lack of form and confidence.
So where to now for Cooper? Back to the Reds, where Ewen McKenzie exists in an executive coaching role while he apparently waits for the Wallabies position to come up. But with more than a team of Wallabies injured and the three other southern hemisphere heavyweights all looking good, who'd want to take over the Australian coaching role right now?
Test rugby is a thoroughly different requirement and McKenzie knows that what works in Super Rugby can be trodden all over by the All Blacks at Eden Park. Really, that's what happened to Cooper.
The Wallabies are playing with passion – watching Adam Ashley-Cooper and Digby Ioane is enough to confirm that. They have won from behind in their last two Tests. Sure it hasn't been pretty, but using the word "toxic" to describe the team atmosphere is strong stuff. "Frustrated" might have been more applicable.
Cooper's was tweeted criticism from the injured and out of form, directed at weary campaigners fighting for the Wallabies' reputation.
Somewhere in Queensland, Will Genia is on a couch wishing he was with his teammates instead of staring at a post-operative knee. He would've been in Pretoria this weekend. Maybe he and Cooper can watch Saturday night's match against the Springboks together and talk about that toxic atmosphere. Genia certainly hasn't tweeted about it.
What do you think of Quade Cooper's recent comments on Twitter?
What do you think of the Wallabies' current playing style?
Is Robbie Deans still the right coach for the job?