In a hurry to impress

GOLD Coast speed merchant Shannon Walker was going so fast last year he ended up going backwards.

Walker - one of the quickest men in rugby league - was in such a hurry to impress with the Titans, he lost his way a little.

“It all got the better of me,” admitted the 20 year-old flyer from Kyogle, whose speed was the talking point of the 2007 Queensland Cup after he starred for Tweed Heads Seagulls in their 28-18 grandfinal win over Redcliffe.

Walker fell victim to his own hype.

Despite all the expectation surrounding his move to the NRL, he managed just three appearances for the Titans in 2008 - all off the interchange bench.

The former Queensland and Australian schoolboy fullback again finds himself locked in a speed war with the likes of Esi Tonga, Jordan Atkins, Kevin Gordon, Chris Walker, David Mead and Brenton Bowen for a wing spot.

He gets another opportunity off the bench in Lismore on Saturday night to further impress coach John Cartwright when the Titans play the New Zealand Warriors.

“I've been really impressed with Shannon through the trials,” Cartwright said yesterday.

“I can really see a glimpse of what people predicted of him last year and why they got so excited.

“We've never pushed him or rushed him - it's always been outside expectations.

“But in the first two trials this year I've been really, really impressed with what he's been able to do.”

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