The Bath number nine, who is poised to sign for the Bridgend/Pontypridd region, has been given the nod to face Australia on Saturday ahead of Llanelli pair Dwayne Peel and Mike Phillips.
For many it was a foregone conclusion that the 24-year-old would be the natural successor to Rob Howley.
But since making his debut against Italy in 2001, he has only won a mere seven caps amid an injury-ravaged career. His return to the Wales line-up against England during the Six Nations was his first appearance at international level for 20 months.
So the relevance of being named for Saturday's Test has not been lost on Cooper and he is now ready to get his stop-start career into gear and make the jersey his own.
He said: 'It has been massively frustrating. As I have improved as a player I have been constantly knocked back by injuries, which really haven't helped my international career.
'Last year I broke a bone in the same foot four times in one season so I played perhaps just ten games all year. That was a difficult time.
'That's why my goal now is just to get a run of games. Even though Bath have had a very difficult season in the Zurich Premiership I have loved it because I have played practically every game for them as well as most of the Six Nations.
'This season has been just what I needed after last year as playing regular rugby is the best way to improve and help your confidence My goal now is to establish myself as an international scrum-half.'
The belief in his promise was illustrated by the decision to fly him to the German head-quarters of boot manufacturer Addidas who have given him the David Beckham-treatment by custom-making his boots to give extra support and protection to that troublesome foot.
But while fancy footwear is one thing, Cooper's reputation will be genuinely boosted with a good show against, arguably, the finest number nine in the world, George Gregan.
The Wallaby skipper made Ireland's Peter Stringer look decidedly ordinary with a dominating display, capped by two expertly taken tries, in Perth last weekend, and has already singled out Cooper as one of the rising Welsh stars.
'I've heard a lot of good things about him,' said Gregan earlier this week. 'He is young and looked impressive in Wales' recent games.'
High praise indeed for the Pencoed product, but Cooper is well aware that he could suffer the same fate as Stringer this Saturday if he is not at his best.
'This will probably be the biggest challenge I have faced as a player,' admitted Cooper. 'But I am looking forward to measuring myself against the player who is widely regarded as the best scrum-half in the world and has been for goodness knows how many years.
'I have never played against him before but I have studied his game as part of my development. He has got his own style of game and I have tried to take things from his game and adapt them into mine.
'If we want to improve then we have got to play these games against the best players in the world.
'Over the last week we have been working on things in training but nothing compares to being out there playing the world champions in their own backyard.'