Vodafone Warriors snare talented young fullback Walsh

Richard Becht & photosport.nz
Thu 18 Mar 2021, 04:45 PM

reece-walsh-1a.jpg


Exciting young Brisbane fullback Reece Walsh, widely regarded as one of the hottest young talents in the game, has been snared by the Vodafone Warriors on a three-year contract from next season.

With the Broncos on a development contract this season, Walsh represented both the Queensland State of Origin Under 18s and Australian Schoolboys in 2019.

The Tweed Seagulls star impressed for the Broncos in their NRL trial against Wynnum Manly last month.

He’s yet another product from the famed Keebra Park State High School rugby league nursery which produced his future teammate Ben Murdoch-Masila along with the likes of Benji Marshall and Payne Haas.

This is a fantastic signing for our club and Vodafone Warriors fans have every reason to be excited about the progress we’re making with recruitment in the short, mid and long term
Cameron GeorgeVodafone Warriors CEO

“This is a fantastic signing for our club and Vodafone Warriors fans have every reason to be excited about the progress we’re making with recruitment in the short, mid and long term,” said Vodafone Warriors CEO Cameron George.

“Reece is a wonderful, polite young man who impressed us immensely when we met him.

“He comes to the Vodafone Warriors at the perfect time following us re-signing Tohu Harris (Harris). We now have an exciting future with experience and exciting young players developed from within and others that have been handpicked to join us. It’s a great statement for our club.”

Of Australian Indigenous and Maori heritage, Walsh has been wowing observers with his skill level.

“Reece is a prodigious talent who has starred in junior footy,” said Vodafone Warriors recruitment manager Peter O’Sullivan.

It’s not often you get an opportunity to secure a player of his ability. He is a natural footballer with speed, balance and vision
Peter O'SullivanVodafone Warriors recruitment manager

“It’s not often you get an opportunity to secure a player of his ability. He is a natural footballer with speed, balance and vision.

“With experience I believe Reece will go on to become a top-line NRL fullback in the coming years. He’ll complement Wayde (Egan), Kodi (Nikorima) and Chanel (Harris-Tavita) perfectly in our spine.

With captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck finishing with the Vodafone Warriors at the end of the season, head coach Nathan Brown said Walsh shaped as a wonderful replacement.

“Reece has all the attributes in his game that the really good players have,” he said.

“His speed and game sense are things that can make a difference in our team. We won’t be putting pressure on Reece by making big statements about his game but we will give him all the guidance to make sure his game is ready for the start of 2022. We want him to work hard and train hard and he will have a great career in front him.”

A left-footed goal kicker, Walsh slotted six from six attempts and scored a try in the Australian Schoolboys’ 36-20 win over the Junior Kiwis in 2019.

REECE WALSH
Born: July 10, 2002
Birthplace: Sydney, NSW
Junior Club: Tweed Seagulls
Position: Fullback
Height: 177cm
Weight: 88kg
Rep Honours: Australian Schoolboys (2019), Queensland Under-18s (2019)

 

Leaguefirst

U20's Player
Sep 18, 2019
41

Vodafone Warriors snare talented young fullback Walsh

Richard Becht & photosport.nz
Thu 18 Mar 2021, 04:45 PM

View attachment 43959

Exciting young Brisbane fullback Reece Walsh, widely regarded as one of the hottest young talents in the game, has been snared by the Vodafone Warriors on a three-year contract from next season.

With the Broncos on a development contract this season, Walsh represented both the Queensland State of Origin Under 18s and Australian Schoolboys in 2019.

The Tweed Seagulls star impressed for the Broncos in their NRL trial against Wynnum Manly last month.

He’s yet another product from the famed Keebra Park State High School rugby league nursery which produced his future teammate Ben Murdoch-Masila along with the likes of Benji Marshall and Payne Haas.



“This is a fantastic signing for our club and Vodafone Warriors fans have every reason to be excited about the progress we’re making with recruitment in the short, mid and long term,” said Vodafone Warriors CEO Cameron George.

“Reece is a wonderful, polite young man who impressed us immensely when we met him.

“He comes to the Vodafone Warriors at the perfect time following us re-signing Tohu Harris (Harris). We now have an exciting future with experience and exciting young players developed from within and others that have been handpicked to join us. It’s a great statement for our club.”

Of Australian Indigenous and Maori heritage, Walsh has been wowing observers with his skill level.

“Reece is a prodigious talent who has starred in junior footy,” said Vodafone Warriors recruitment manager Peter O’Sullivan.



“It’s not often you get an opportunity to secure a player of his ability. He is a natural footballer with speed, balance and vision.

“With experience I believe Reece will go on to become a top-line NRL fullback in the coming years. He’ll complement Wayde (Egan), Kodi (Nikorima) and Chanel (Harris-Tavita) perfectly in our spine.

With captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck finishing with the Vodafone Warriors at the end of the season, head coach Nathan Brown said Walsh shaped as a wonderful replacement.

“Reece has all the attributes in his game that the really good players have,” he said.

“His speed and game sense are things that can make a difference in our team. We won’t be putting pressure on Reece by making big statements about his game but we will give him all the guidance to make sure his game is ready for the start of 2022. We want him to work hard and train hard and he will have a great career in front him.”

A left-footed goal kicker, Walsh slotted six from six attempts and scored a try in the Australian Schoolboys’ 36-20 win over the Junior Kiwis in 2019.

REECE WALSH
Born: July 10, 2002
Birthplace: Sydney, NSW
Junior Club: Tweed Seagulls
Position: Fullback
Height: 177cm
Weight: 88kg
Rep Honours: Australian Schoolboys (2019), Queensland Under-18s (2019)

 

Miket12

Warriors 1st Grader
Apr 20, 2012
9,677

Exclusive: Reece Walsh on State of Origin hype, adjusting to the NRL and the life changing decision to join the Warriors​

Reece Walsh would back himself to "have a crack" at State of Origin level, even though he admits he has still got so much to learn about the sport.

The Warriors rookie returns this week for the clash against the Knights on Saturday, after missing last Sunday's Storm defeat through suspension.

But the wider picture is the second Origin clash next weekend in Brisbane.

Walsh had been tipped as a possible bolter before the series by prominent ex-players and pundits, and those calls have only grown stronger following Queensland's 50-6 demise in game one.

The Morons are looking for inspiration and the possible absence of AJ Brimson through injury would open up a bench utility spot.

The 18-year-old Walsh has only played six NRL games and it would seem premature and ill-advised to throw him in, but that prospect is apparently being seriously considered by the Queensland hierarchy.

The Warriors' Central Coast base is insulated from the Sydney and Brisbane media and Walsh tries to ignore the hype – though it can be difficult.

"I try not to look at it too much, I try not to get caught up in that sort of stuff," Walsh told the Herald. "Obviously I do see that stuff but even how good it sounds, I haven't had too many first-grade games. But that doesn't mean that the confidence isn't there - that I could go out and have a crack.

"I definitely would have a crack but I have still got so much to learn and I am lucky enough to have people around me that are teaching me."

Walsh admits representing the Morons has been a lifelong ambition, whether it happens this year or sometime in the future.

"100 percent I would want to," said Walsh. "I'm a young fella and that is something I always dreamed to do so if the opportunity was there I would love to do it.

"If I do get the chance to go into Origin camp, I would go in there like a sponge and I would soak it all up and just learn as much as I can. It would be really special."

But Walsh acknowledges that many observers forget the paucity of his experience. He didn't play at all in 2020 – as development grades were cancelled – and had just three senior matches (a Broncos trial and two Queensland Cup games) before his NRL debut in late April.

Warriors coach Nathan Brown has been unequivocal on the matter, reiterating last Sunday that "it's not in anyone's best interests to put an 18-year-old kid in State of Origin that's played [six] games of footy in the NRL and didn't play last year because of [the] Covid [pandemic]".

Warriors consultant and legendary NSW coach Phil Gould told Australian media that Queensland shouldn't be looking to an 18-year-old to solve their problems.

Since his debut Walsh has had three more NRL starts and two appearances off the bench.

That brief resume has produced four tries, eight try assists, six line breaks, around 120 running metres a game and a whole lot of excitement.

"It hasn't been too bad," said Walsh. "I'm still getting used to first grade and it is going to take me a while to get used to [it] but I am really loving it, playing with the boys and being around the boys."

Walsh is being managed carefully by the Warriors, but is so far coping well with the physical demands. Around 86 kilos, he hopes to put on three or four more, without compromising his speed.

"I've prepared well coming up," says Walsh. "I'm not the biggest person in the world but I am not the smallest that plays in this sport. Physically I'm going alright.

"I've definitely got a lot to get better and a lot more to go but at the moment I do feel strong and that physically I'm going okay.

"[The contact] is a lot more than the local footy and your own age group. The hits are bigger. [Recovery] is really important to get yourself ready for the next week."

Given what he has produced so far, allied with his obvious potential, Walsh is already being hailed as one of the best signings in Warriors history, a genuine recruitment coup.

He's a terrific talent but seems grounded and humble, while his x-factor has attracted new fans to the Auckland club.

The Nerang product had never thought about playing for anyone other than Brisbane, but the move has worked out well.

"I did think I was going to be a Bronco for life but the Warriors came up with an opportunity to play first grade and have a crack in the NRL and I just didn't want to throw that away so I took it," says Walsh. "Now that I am here I'm really happy with the decision that I made. I'm learning a lot and I am loving it, playing around a good bunch of boys. I'm so happy I made the choice to come here."

 

playdaball

Heritage Member
Apr 23, 2012
2,300
Reece is a fine young talent who spear heads the Warriors attack. Unfortunately at 18 years old, he has almost become one of the senior players.
He will only get better and hopefully remains at the Warriors for a little while yet. Moving to NZ could be a big move for him - time will tell.

Can you answer 2 questions for me?

1, Do you get very nervous every time an opposing team puts a bomb up, aimed at Walsh?

2, Do you get nervous every time an opposing player runs at him ?

Sorry to say, I most certainly do.

Can he move to the halves? Can reassess next year , 1 or 6?

If he wants to learn from Roger Tuivasa-Sheck , surely the best way would be to watch Roger play at fullback?
 

Noitall

1st Grade Fringe
Aug 21, 2019
1,989
Reece is a fine young talent who spear heads the Warriors attack. Unfortunately at 18 years old, he has almost become one of the senior players.
He will only get better and hopefully remains at the Warriors for a little while yet. Moving to NZ could be a big move for him - time will tell.

Can you answer 2 questions for me?

1, Do you get very nervous every time an opposing team puts a bomb up, aimed at Walsh?

2, Do you get nervous every time an opposing player runs at him ?

Sorry to say, I most certainly do.

Can he move to the halves? Can reassess next year , 1 or 6?

If he wants to learn from Roger Tuivasa-Sheck , surely the best way would be to watch Roger play at fullback?
Number 1 and number 2 for me. He was absolutely bamboozled in the second half and didn’t even attempt most bombs. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck may have been the same at the back, he dodged a few aswell. Interesting kicks defused was both 62%, we didn’t put the same amount against Mann in the 1st half though. Walsh made some mistakes but he looks like xfactor and things happen around him. That line dropout that went out looked like luck but you wouldn’t put it past him to have played for that.
 
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Rizzah

Stop Being Shit
Contributor
Apr 18, 2012
4,607
Dunedin, NZ
The Morons will unleash Reece Lightning.
Peter Badel


Queensland coach Paul Green will take one of the biggest gambles in Origin’s 41-year history by handing 18-year-old Warriors whizkid Reece Walsh his Morons debut for Game Two.

News Corp can reveal Walsh will become Queensland’s youngest player in 26 years, since Ben Ikin in 1995, when he wears the No.1 jumper at 18 years and 352 days in the Morons’ desperate bid to save the series at Suncorp Stadium next Sunday night.

Stream selected Fox League shows on Kayo Freebies completely free this June including NRL 360, Sunday Night with Matty Johns, Big League Wrap & more. No Credit Card. No Brainer. Register Free Now >

Walsh has played just seven NRL games and only debuted in April, just weeks after his shock decision to quit the Broncos for a $1.2 million deal at the Warriors.

The former Broncos sensation has hit the NRL like a tsunami this season in his rookie year and now Green is hoping his attacking brilliance can fight fire with fire against a red-hot NSW backline.

The selection of Walsh is one of the biggest bombshells in Origin folklore, evoking images of Ikin being picked for Queensland after just four first-grade games at 18 years and 83 days during the 1995 Super League war.

In other stunning selection developments to hit Camp Moron:

* Cowboys prop Frank Molo will also make his Origin debut, capping a emotional fightback after the James Ackerman tragedy in 2015;

* Broncos winger Xavier Coates has been axed;

* Titans’ $1.25 million man David Fifita has been dropped to the bench;

* Broncos discard and Dragons hooker Andrew McCullough has won a dramatic recall to the Origin arena to replace injured rake Harry Grant; and

* Jaydn Su’A and Joe Ofahengaue have been axed following Queensland’s 50-6 debacle in Origin I.

Morons selectors have shunned any thoughts of conservatism in the wake of their Townsville horror show and are banking on some fresh blood to ignite a Queensland fightback at Suncorp

The freshest face of all is baby-faced Warriors flyer Walsh.

After just seven games, the Queensland under-18s sensation has four tries, six line breaks, eight try assists and 22 tackle busts and averages 123 run metres per game.

When Ponga was ruled out during the week, Green backed Walsh to handle an Origin baptism against the in-form Blues.

“There’s been guys in the past who have handled it at a young age,” Green said.

“As Wally Lewis (NRL Immortal and Queensland legend) said, ‘If you are good enough, you are old enough’.

“I haven’t had anything to do with Reece, but by all reports he is a confident kid.”

Walsh told News Corp last week: “It would be crazy to put on the Queensland jersey at senior level.

“I wouldn’t let Queensland down ... I would have a crack.”

In other news, McCullough will make a stunning comeback to the Origin arena after Grant broke down in Melbourne’s defeat of Wests Tigers on Saturday night.

The 31-year-old played the last of his three Origin games in 2018 and McCullough’s Queensland career appeared to be over when he was released by the Broncos in February for a stint at the Dragons.

But after two injury-plagued years, the Dalby product has been a revelation for the Dragons, playing 14 games and rekindling his combination with former Broncos teammate Ben Hunt, who also returns to Camp Morons.

Hunt’s inclusion as the No.14 utility is the ultimate redemption for the Dragons playmaker, who missed last year’s epic boilover of the Blues in the Origin decider after being axed by Wayne Bennett following his poor display in Game Two.

McCullough will be part of an engine room spearheaded by Josh Papalii, who returns to the side after missing Origin I with suspension.

Walsh’s blooding at fullback will see Valentine Holmes join Kyle Feldt on the wing, leaving no room for Coates, who has been axed after some indifferent form at the struggling Broncos.

Kurt Capewell will remain at left centre, while Fifita is a shock relegation to the bench, with Souths workhorse Jai Arrow to partner Felise Kaufusi in the back row.

But perhaps the biggest surprise is a debut for Cowboys prop Molo, who almost quit the game six years ago following the tragic death of Ackerman in an Intrust Super Cup game.

Molo left the Broncos seeking a fresh start in Townsville and the move has paid dividends for the 26-year-old enforcer, who will add some punch to the bench with Fifita.

FULL TEAM

1 Reece Walsh

2 Valentine Holmes

3 Kurt Capewell

4 Dane Gagai

5 Kyle Feldt

6 Cameron Munster

7 Daly Cherry-Evans (c)

8 Christian Welch

9 Andrew McCullough

10 Josh Papalii

11 Felise Kaufusi

12 Jai Arrow

13 Tino Fa’asuamaleaui

Bench

14 Ben Hunt

15 David Fifita

16 Mo Fotuaika

17 Frank Molo

 

BeastMode

Warriors 1st Grader
Mar 7, 2015
8,765
The Morons will unleash Reece Lightning.
Peter Badel


Queensland coach Paul Green will take one of the biggest gambles in Origin’s 41-year history by handing 18-year-old Warriors whizkid Reece Walsh his Morons debut for Game Two.

News Corp can reveal Walsh will become Queensland’s youngest player in 26 years, since Ben Ikin in 1995, when he wears the No.1 jumper at 18 years and 352 days in the Morons’ desperate bid to save the series at Suncorp Stadium next Sunday night.

Stream selected Fox League shows on Kayo Freebies completely free this June including NRL 360, Sunday Night with Matty Johns, Big League Wrap & more. No Credit Card. No Brainer. Register Free Now >

Walsh has played just seven NRL games and only debuted in April, just weeks after his shock decision to quit the Broncos for a $1.2 million deal at the Warriors.

The former Broncos sensation has hit the NRL like a tsunami this season in his rookie year and now Green is hoping his attacking brilliance can fight fire with fire against a red-hot NSW backline.

The selection of Walsh is one of the biggest bombshells in Origin folklore, evoking images of Ikin being picked for Queensland after just four first-grade games at 18 years and 83 days during the 1995 Super League war.

In other stunning selection developments to hit Camp Moron:

* Cowboys prop Frank Molo will also make his Origin debut, capping a emotional fightback after the James Ackerman tragedy in 2015;

* Broncos winger Xavier Coates has been axed;

* Titans’ $1.25 million man David Fifita has been dropped to the bench;

* Broncos discard and Dragons hooker Andrew McCullough has won a dramatic recall to the Origin arena to replace injured rake Harry Grant; and

* Jaydn Su’A and Joe Ofahengaue have been axed following Queensland’s 50-6 debacle in Origin I.

Morons selectors have shunned any thoughts of conservatism in the wake of their Townsville horror show and are banking on some fresh blood to ignite a Queensland fightback at Suncorp

The freshest face of all is baby-faced Warriors flyer Walsh.

After just seven games, the Queensland under-18s sensation has four tries, six line breaks, eight try assists and 22 tackle busts and averages 123 run metres per game.

When Ponga was ruled out during the week, Green backed Walsh to handle an Origin baptism against the in-form Blues.

“There’s been guys in the past who have handled it at a young age,” Green said.

“As Wally Lewis (NRL Immortal and Queensland legend) said, ‘If you are good enough, you are old enough’.

“I haven’t had anything to do with Reece, but by all reports he is a confident kid.”

Walsh told News Corp last week: “It would be crazy to put on the Queensland jersey at senior level.

“I wouldn’t let Queensland down ... I would have a crack.”

In other news, McCullough will make a stunning comeback to the Origin arena after Grant broke down in Melbourne’s defeat of Wests Tigers on Saturday night.

The 31-year-old played the last of his three Origin games in 2018 and McCullough’s Queensland career appeared to be over when he was released by the Broncos in February for a stint at the Dragons.

But after two injury-plagued years, the Dalby product has been a revelation for the Dragons, playing 14 games and rekindling his combination with former Broncos teammate Ben Hunt, who also returns to Camp Morons.

Hunt’s inclusion as the No.14 utility is the ultimate redemption for the Dragons playmaker, who missed last year’s epic boilover of the Blues in the Origin decider after being axed by Wayne Bennett following his poor display in Game Two.

McCullough will be part of an engine room spearheaded by Josh Papalii, who returns to the side after missing Origin I with suspension.

Walsh’s blooding at fullback will see Valentine Holmes join Kyle Feldt on the wing, leaving no room for Coates, who has been axed after some indifferent form at the struggling Broncos.

Kurt Capewell will remain at left centre, while Fifita is a shock relegation to the bench, with Souths workhorse Jai Arrow to partner Felise Kaufusi in the back row.

But perhaps the biggest surprise is a debut for Cowboys prop Molo, who almost quit the game six years ago following the tragic death of Ackerman in an Intrust Super Cup game.

Molo left the Broncos seeking a fresh start in Townsville and the move has paid dividends for the 26-year-old enforcer, who will add some punch to the bench with Fifita.

FULL TEAM

1 Reece Walsh

2 Valentine Holmes

3 Kurt Capewell

4 Dane Gagai

5 Kyle Feldt

6 Cameron Munster

7 Daly Cherry-Evans (c)

8 Christian Welch

9 Andrew McCullough

10 Josh Papalii

11 Felise Kaufusi

12 Jai Arrow

13 Tino Fa’asuamaleaui

Bench

14 Ben Hunt

15 David Fifita

16 Mo Fotuaika

17 Frank Molo


Congratulations if its true, and good luck defending turbo, tedsco and Mitchell….

Don’t think his defence is ready for origin but what do I know aye…
 

Toookey

1st Grade Fringe
May 3, 2021
209
You know what? F**k the haters. This guy is going to be an absolute superstar. He has sooo much to learn and is going to get there so much faster when he’s chosen for for state of origin. How many 18 year olds get chosen like that? I’m in shock. It will do his fane so much better for the experience.

I knew he was good but not damn, that’s amazing
 

Stalefish540

.
Contributor
May 13, 2017
2,795
Mt. Smart
Congratulations if its true, and good luck defending turbo, tedsco and Mitchell….

Don’t think his defence is ready for origin but what do I know aye…
He won't die wondering that's for sure, we've seen that he doesn't crawl into his shell after an error.

But must win origin? That NSW backline is going to run rampant on him. They will try beat him to a pulp every time the ball gets near him.
 
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