View Comments
Ashley-Cooper tipped for Wallaby job
Ashley-Cooper tipped for Wallaby job

Western Force winger Nick Cummins says Adam Ashley-Cooper should lead the Wallabies after Ben Mowen's shock decision to leave Australian rugby at the end of the season.

Cummins, who has returned to training after the Wallabies' tour of Europe, said the versatile 91-Test back was respected by fellow internationals.

"There are a few contenders," he said.

"I think Adam Ashley-Cooper should be up there. He knows a fair bit and the boys respect him quite a bit.

"That's one of the main criteria, respect from your teammates. He's a good bloke and he'll go all right."

Mowen, who will play in France after shunning the chance to lead Australia at next year's World Cup, said he was putting his family first and the decision was not about money.

"I wouldn't know what sort of love he was getting from the ARU, but he said it was family matters," Cummins said.

"You can never knock a bloke for that because there are a lot of things that go on behind the scenes that you don't know about."

Cummins, 26, started against England, Italy, Ireland and Wales last year, but was one of six players stood down for the Scotland Test by coach Ewen McKenzie after they had stayed out drinking following the Dublin Test. Nine other players were reprimanded.

But Cummins backed McKenzie's approach to team discipline.

"You've got to do what you've got to do and everyone sees different ways. Whatever he does is the right option because it's the right option for his team," he said.

"He's a good bloke. He seems to rally the boys all right.

"He takes into account the best way for everyone which is very important because you can't paint everyone with the same brush. He knows that and he's good at it."

And Cummins believes Force coach Michael Foley is on the right track.

"He has brought quite a bit of belief, not just in the team but individually. That's the start of it," Cummins said.

"You've got to believe in yourself, believe in the team and then achieve. Deep down we all know where we want to go … getting better every year until we win the bugger."

Cummins has also been impressed with Foley's recruiting for the new season.

"There's a couple of big blokes getting about there, especially the big Saffas (South Africans)," he said.

"They're looking big and strong."

I think Adam Ashley-Cooper should be up there." Nick Cummins