Former Wallabies captain Michael Hooper has been warned against his planned move to sevens rugby by New Zealand’s former cross-code superstar Sonny Bill Williams.
Hooper has confirmed a switch to sevens from the 15-man format, with playing at the 2024 Paris Olympics a huge “carrot” in his decision.
However, the 32-year-old Wallabies centurion, who was unceremoniously dumped from the 2023 World Cup squad by former coach Eddie Jones, was simply told ‘don’t do it’ by Williams, who played for New Zealand’s sevens team at the 2016 Olympics.
“That didn’t fill me with a heap of confidence,” Hooper said.
“I haven’t spoken to a huge amount of guys [who have made the switch from 15s to sevens], but I do want to get a lot of information from the guys who do play sevens and I need to lean on them a lot.
“I want to pick their brains because it is a different game.”
Hooper last played sevens as a teenager, but is determined to make the switch a success.
“There were offers throughout the year to go elsewhere and nothing sort of really pricked my ears up,” Hooper said. “[Then] I actually thought there’s the opportunity to play a different game and the opportunity of the Olympics at the end of it.
“Like, imagine doing an [Olympics] opening ceremony for Australia, walking out for your country would be pretty remarkable.”
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