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SportThe teenage sensation the Roosters have identified to replace Cooper Cronk

19:11  20 may  2019
19:11  20 may  2019 Source:   sportingnews.com

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The teenage sensation the Roosters have identified to replace Cooper Cronk © Credit: The Daily Telegraph Meet the 16-year-old earmarked as the long-term replacement for Cooper Cronk.

Sam Walker, son of former NRL player Ben Walker, is high on the Roosters' radar after star halfback Cronk announced his NRL retirement on Monday.

Such is their preparation and professionalism, the Roosters have already held discussions with the teenage sensation, according to The Daily Telegraph's Phil Rothfield.

Walker is a rugby union product but plays the 13-man code on weekends for the Ipswich Jets under-18s in the Mal Meninga Cup.

‘’The Roosters think long-term, they think smart, so they’ve identified a youngster Sam Walker,’’ Rothfield told NRL 360 .

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‘’He turns 17 this year and 18 next year. He goes to Ipswich Grammar, he plays rugby union there and the ARU are desperately all over him. He’s Ben Walker’s son.

‘’Two weeks ago he came down and met Trent Robinson, Nick Politis and also met with Luke Keary.

‘’They put the big sell on him and while he won’t be ready next year or the year after, they have identified this boy as a long-term replacement for Cooper Cronk.

‘’He’s a super player and he’s a very intelligent player. He’s been well-schooled and the Roosters were really, really impressed with him as a person, not just as a footballer.’’

Host Ben Ikin, who is close friends with his father, suggested Walker could be ready for the NRL at the age of just 17.

‘’I’m hearing a little different about the speed of his development,’’ he said.

NRL legend set to announce retirement

NRL legend set to announce retirement Roosters halfback Cooper Cronk is expected to announce his impending retirement from rugby league on Monday. The Sydney Roosters have called a press conference for 10am (AEST). Nine NRL reporter Danny Weidler said that Cronk was set to announce the end of his storied career. https://twitter.com/Danny_Weidler/status/1130225864480677888?ref_src=twsrc%5EtfwCronk, 35, has been widely tipped to retire after this season; the end of his two-year, $1 million per season deal with the Roosters.

‘’Such is his talent and emotional maturity that you might find he ends up playing some NRL football next year.’’

Brisbane reportedly signed Walker as a 12-year-old on a scholarship, however that deal finishes at the end of the year with rival clubs ready to swoop.

The Bulldogs have offered almost double than the Roosters, however Rothfield reports Walker is favouring Trent Robinson's record of developing young players.

The Warriors have also flown out to get a first-hand look at the young talent.

If he chooses the reigning premiers, Walker could possibly have the opportunity to work with Cronk who is heading in the direction of a consultancy role for the club's future playmakers.

Cronk also has a career in the media on the table and the NRL will be desperate to keep him involved in the game.

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