Bullet Walker adds to Quins selection debate

Wandsworth Guardian: Ready: Charlie Walker has hit the ground running when it comes to making his way in the Quins first team Ready: Charlie Walker has hit the ground running when it comes to making his way in the Quins first team

Director of rugby Conor O’Shea has admitted the form of Quins winger Charlie Walker has put the cat among the pigeons in terms of selection in his back line.

The 20-year-old, a doppelganger for centre Matt Hopper, scored one and set up another for fly half Ben Botica in Friday’s 31-26 LV=Cup defeat to Sale Sharks.

Walker, who has watched as contemporaries Marland Yarde and Anthony Watson have been involved with the England set up this autumn, has sparkled having been pressed into action in recent weeks with resources at the Stoop stretched.

But the England U20s international’s firecracker performance against the Sharks will give O’Shea food for thought with Ugo Monye, Mike Brown and Tom Williams all in contention to start when Gloucester visit on Saturday.

And the Stoop chief admitted Walker had hit the ground running when it came to making his way in the first team.

“He terrorised Clermont Auvergne and was excellent at Welford Road against Leicester. He can make things happen,” said O’Shea.

“He is not 21 yet. He has had a difficult year, but he has his confidence back and wants the ball in his hands.

“He is so talented. “You look at the back three he played with in the U20s two years ago. It was Marland Yarde, Anthony Watson and himself and he was the stand out player.

“He had a difficult time at the World Cup in terms of performance levels, but he has worked his way back.

“He scored tries for fun for Esher last year. He is a bullet to say the least and there will be some decisions to make.”

Paul Doran-Jones, Nick Kennedy, Ollie Lindsay-Hague and Sam Twomey will feature in Monday’s A League semi-final.


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