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Hooper ready to battle
9 May 2013 11:03am
By Westgate, Mike Brown
Hooper is ready for a selection battle
Australia flanker Michael Hooper is ready to battle George Smith for the number seven jersey.
George Smith is back in the selection frame after returning to ACT Brumbies following almost three years abroad.
There has been a clamour to include the veteran flanker but Hooper is determined to prove his point on the pitch.
''It is a funny one because players should be picked on form so, at the end of the day, it's got to come down to who is playing well,'' said Hooper.
''I haven't been reading into it and I'm not too sure what the situation is, but I was down there when George was at the Brumbies, so to catch up with him again would be pretty cool.
''It doesn't get any easier with someone like George coming back and Gilly (Liam Gill) doing well up in Queensland, but it is good to have the competition there.
"And regardless of the fact, if you do get to make it into the jersey it would be all the more sweeter.''
The next two weeks will be crucial ahead of the Wallabies selection with Hooper, Gill and Smith all looking to impress.
Hooper and the New South Wales Waratahs face the Stormers on Saturday and the young flanker is well aware of the game's importance.
''There's an added bit of competition there and I want to do really well,'' added Hooper.
''First and foremost, it's here at the Tahs and the team performance, which looks after individual performance, and things lead on [from] that.''
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