Cape Town - Waratahs head coach Daryl Gibson has named his matchday squad to take on the Reds in their Australian derby in Brisbane on Saturday.
Gibson has opted to start Wallaby Nick Phipps at scrumhalf with Jake Gordon earning himself a rest which means Matt Lucas will do duty as the reserve scrumhalf.
"Speaking with our three halves, I have decided to rotate them over the next two games," said Gibson.
"Nick Phipps will start this weekend with Matt Lucas on the bench.
"Jake Gordon will be back in the next game and his omission from the line up is by no means a reflection on his form. We have three strong halves and the rotation this weekend will be our strongest combination to face the Reds opposition.":
Hooper is backing Phipps to make a good impression this Saturday night.
"He (Phipps) was fantastic against the Reds last year," said Hooper.
"He loves starting and loves playing against the Reds every time he gets that opportunity.
"Our back-line remains unchanged – I want to give them the opportunity to address certain areas and deliver a performance we know they have the ability to."
With Tolu Latu ruled out with injury, Hugh Roach will start as hooker with Sekope Kepu back at tighthead prop after serving his one game suspension.
Gibson said the New South Wales-Queensland rivalry is one that means a lot to the side and the team will be wanting to represent the State proudly when they pull on the sky blue jersey on Saturday.
"For us this weekend it’s all about pride in our jersey – this is our biggest local derby and we want to represent our State proudly," he explained.
"A big focus for us this weekend is improving our line outs, so we have David McDuling and Dean Mumm starting as locks to ensure we have superior line outs."
15 Karmichael Hunt, 14 Izaia Perese, 13 Samu Kerevi (captain), 12 Duncan Paia’aua, 11 Eto Nabuli, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 James Tuttle, 8 Scott Higginbotham, 7 George Smith, 6 Hendrik Tui, 5 Lukhan Tui, 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Sam Talakai, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Sef Fa’agase
Substitutes: 16 Alex Mafi, 17 Kirwan Sanday, 18 Taniela Tupou, 19 Izack Rodda, 20 Leroy Houston, 21 Nick Frisby, 22 Hamish Stewart, 23 Campbell Magnay
15 Israel Folau, 14 Taqele Naiyaravoro, 13 Rob Horne, 12 David Horwitz, 11 Cam Clark, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Michael Wells, 7 Michael Hooper (captain), 6 Ned Hanigan, 5 Dean Mumm, 4 David McDuling, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Hugh Roach, 1 Tom Robertson
Substitutes: 16 Damien Fitzpatrick, 17 Paddy Ryan, 18 Angus Taavao, 19 Will Skelton, 20 Jed Holloway, 21 Matt Lucas, 22 Irae Simone, 23 Bryce Hegarty