Despite Walker being one of the most talented centres in the game, Sea Eagle fans must be patient.
When Manly announced that Dylan Walker had signed a four-year deal with the club, the Brookvale faithful would have been thrilled.
Upon his signing, the 21-year-old stated his preference to play in the halves. Growing up playing five-eighth, it makes sense that he attempts to fill the void left by Kieran Foran. Yet Walker still has a lot of work to do if he is to successfully step into the Kiwi’s shoes.
New Manly coach, Trent Barrett, has already revealed he would like to see Cherry-Evans roam more around the field controlling the team’s attack in a similar role to Johnathan Thurston. If Cherry-Evans is to play the Thurston role, that leaves Walker to play the Michael Morgan role.
A quick and powerful runner of the ball, Walker has the skills to be a running five-eighth. While he has the ability to make the change to the halves, it will take time for him to adjust and to improve his distribution if he is to become a more rounded player.
Walker will need to put 2015 behind him if he is to reach the heights he did in 2014.
2014 was a year to remember for Walker. After making his NRL debut the previous year, he established himself as a first-grade footballer in a Premiership winning side. His success for the Bunnies also led to a Kangaroos call up where he won his four caps to date.
This year was an unsuccessful one for the Rabbitohs as injuries and poor form dented their Premiership defence but it was at the season’s close when the drama started for Walker. After being admitted to hospital for overdosing on painkillers, he was later released by Souths as they paved the way for Sam Burgess to return.
In 2016, it’s a new club and new position for Walker. If given the time to succeed, he will.