Cheika stays positive over Pocock return for semi-final
WALLABIES coach Michael Cheika refused to contemplate taking on flamboyant Argentina in Monday's World Cup semi-final without his chief breakdown man David Pocock and game-breaker Israel Folau.
An upbeat Cheika said he was confident rather than hopeful Pocock would overcome a calf injury to face the Pumas.
"I'm not hopeful, I am really positive about him," he said.
"When you hope for something, there's half a chance you won't get."
Cheika knows how much Australia missed Pocock's work at the breakdown against a gallant Scotland when a calf injury kept him sidelined.
But he is supremely confident he'll have his scavenger on deck against the dangerous Pumas who are not only strong in the forwards and scrums but also dangerous with their free-flowing attack out wide off a slick passing game which will test the Wallabies' resolve.
"He's moving along really nicely and he has already had a run," Cheika told a press conference in London.
"We're really pleased with that, that's a good sign.
"We won't bring him back and say 'come into training lad and do everything' just progress him through.
"I'm really positive about him playing."
Cheika's confidence extends to Folau, who has been receiving around-the-clock physio for an ankle injury that also prevented him playing in the 35-34 thriller against Scotland.
Of more immediate concern was tighthead prop Scott Sio, who injured his elbow against the Scots, but Cheika said: "The scan showed it wasn't as bad as it could have been, so he's moving along nicely."