NRL-bound Walker, scores 16 tries for Seagulls
By STEVE SPINKS
TWEED Seagulls flyer Shannon Walker has finished agonisingly short of being the top tryscorer in the Queensland Cup.
The 18-year-old, who is in his first year of first grade in the old Brisbane first grade competition, scored a try in the Seagulls' 26-16 victory over Brisbane Easts on Sunday, his 16th of the season, which secured third spot on the ladder for the Tweed team.
However, John Taminika, of Easts, and Rory Bromley, of Redcliffe, both managed tries in the last round to take their tally up to 17.
"I'm still pretty happy with that," Walker told The Northern Star yesterday. "(But) I wasn't really keeping track with all that (try-scoring tally)."
Walker being underwhelmed by the situation is understandable.
After all, the freakish former Kyogle fullback has been scoring tries at a rate of knots for years.
However, the fact he has kept his strike rate up since stepping up to the Queensland Cup just shows the class the youngster possesses.
Walker's freakish ability has helped the Seagulls to a best-ever home-and-away season.
The Tweed team finished third behind perennial Queensland Cup powerhouses the North Queensland Young Guns, which is the Cowboys' NRL feeder team, and Redcliffe.
The Seagulls play Redcliffe this weekend in the qualifying semi-final.
"The competition up here is heaps quicker than at home," Walker said.
"The other players are bigger and everything. It took me a while to get used to the boys and I didn't start off the best.
"But we've (the Seagulls) come together now and I'm just stoked to be here."
Walker's coach, Troy McCarthy, has told The Northern Star that he believes the fullback will be playing in the NRL within 12 months.
And the Titans contracted youngster hopes this is the case.
I'm contracted with them (the Titans) for another two years,' Walker said.
It's highly possible (that I could get into the top 25). I'm working on it.'
When he's not training, Walker works for the Titans as a development officer along with former Kyogle school-mate Will Mathews, who plays in the second-row for the Seagulls. Mullumbimby's Dan Molenaar, a prop, plays off the interchange bench for the Seagulls.
It helps having some mates here,' the former Kyogle High student said.
Will's been handling it well. We know the way each other plays, so it's easy for me to run off him.'