Ashley-Cooper eyes early Brumbies return




Injured CA Brumbies fullback Adam Ashley-Cooper has returned to training in a bold bid to be fit for Saturday’s Tooheys New Super 14 Week Six clash with the Blues in Auckland.

The Australian Under 21 star suffered a low-grade syndesmosis injury on his left ankle during the Brumbies’ Week Four victory over the Cats at Canberra Stadium, but has progressed well with treatment and is expected to be named in the starting lineup for the weekend clash.

Ashley-Cooper completed some light running exercises and joined the team for ball-work at the back end of today’s training session at Griffith Oval.

The 21-year-old has showed plenty of promise in his four matches at fullback this season, crossing for tries in each of his last two outings.

The 2005 Wallabies debutante is confident that he will return to the playing field on Saturday after just one week on the sidelines.

“The ankle’s feeling really good. I’ve had a run today and it’s pulled up ok. I’ve got a fitness program – a few exercises – to get through tomorrow and then a training session on Thursday so we’ll make a decision after that,” he said.

“At the moment it’s feeling good and I’m not worried at all that I’m rushing (my return).”

“The physio and doctor are both very happy with the way it’s responded to treatment and I’m feeling really confident running on it,” he added.

CA Brumbies Head Coach Laurie Fisher will name his touring squad on Thursday ahead of the team’s departure for Auckland on Thursday afternoon.

Ashley-Cooper knows his defence will be tested against the Blues’ star back-line this Saturday night.

“They’ve got an awesome back three so we’re expecting them to throw the ball wide and really test us out.”

“They haven’t played their best football yet this season and we’re very wary of them,” he said.

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