Quade Cooper may have only played 120 minutes in two matches back from major knee surgery, but the Wallaby flyhalf said Monday he was ready to start against Scotland in Newcastle next week.
The Wallabies have been experiencing a dire run with injuries to their prospective No.10s ahead of the home internationals against the Scots, followed by three Tests with Wales.
Kurtley Beale (shoulder), fellow Melbourne Rebels star James O'Connor (liver laceration) and Brumbies pivot Christian Lealiifano (knee) are all sidelined - leaving Cooper as the only specialist No.10 in Robbie Deans' 39-man squad.
The injuries have increasing Cooper's chances of regaining the jersey after shaky performances at last year's World Cup in New Zealand.
Waratahs playmaker Berrick Barnes and former New Zealand Under-20 representative Mike Harris can both play flyhalf, but are better suited to inside centre, while uncapped Waratahs utility Bernard Foley would be a left-field choice after playing fullback all season.
The mercurial Queenslander, Cooper, ruptured knee ligaments himself in the World Cup play-off for third place against the Welsh seven months ago.
But 24-year-old made an impressive 40-minute return in the Reds' 34-20 Super Rugby win over the Lions before playing out the whole 80 minutes in Saturday's 13-12 victory over the Brumbies.
Despite his limited playing time, Cooper believes he is ready to lead the Wallabies' attack against the Scots.
"I'm very confident," Cooper told a media scrum in Sydney on Monday.
"I've only played one game and a half and felt good when I was out there," Cooper added.
"It's a matter of just keep ticking the boxes and keep moving along. If I get the opportunity, I'll put my hand up and give it everything I've got."
Like the game itself, the 35-Test star failed to reach any heights against the Brumbies in Canberra at the weekend, as his passing game was off and he shanked one bomb out on the full.
But with just two training days available after the Wallabies selectors finalise their Test team on Sunday, Cooper's combination with halfback Will Genia and a need to rest some players for the June 9 Test against Wales could work well in his favour.
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