INJURED Wallaby Quade Cooper may be on crutches, but it was not enough to stop the rugby star from supporting Steve Irwin Day.

But he was not about to admit his knee injury, which he picked up in the World Cup last month, was better than being targeted by New Zealanders.

Cooper, who was born in NZ, had to endure savage criticism from Kiwi crowds during the games he played.

Yesterday, he carefully lowered himself on to a wicker mat so he could write a message into a wet cement block at Australia Zoo.

He said his injury was a "mixed blessing". Although it had given him a breather from training, he said he was keen to return to the field.

"I have one more week on the crutches," Cooper said, grinning.