Broncos beware! Gus pinpoints his chosen one
Phil Gould has launched a Red Hill poaching raid after the Warriors identified Broncos young gun Reece Walsh as the heir to rugby-bound superstar Roger Tuivasa-Sheck.
The Warriors have wasted no time devising a succession plan following Tuivasa-Sheck's decision to quit the NRL at the end of the year to pursue an All Blacks jersey.
And one player firmly in their sights is Walsh - the fleet-footed teenager who is viewed as Brisbane's long-term No. 1.
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Walsh, 18, made his senior debut for the Broncos a fortnight ago, starring in a trial game against Wynnum-Manly, but is not in contention for Round 1 of the NRL season.
With a left-foot kick, slick step and sizzling speed, Walsh has all the attributes to be an NRL star of the future but is yet to feature in the Intrust Super Cup.
Walsh is off-contract this year and the Broncos are desperate to retain him long-term, but that hasn't stopped the Warriors from throwing their hat in the ring for the Gold Coast product with an offer in excess of $400,000-a-season.
Tuivasa-Sheck's move will free up $1 million-a-season in New Zealand's salary cap and the Warriors have pulling power following the appointment of league heavyweight "Gus" Gould as a consultant.
While Walsh is a future prospect for the Warriors, "RTS" is determined to finish his tenure at New Zealand with a bang.
The 2019 Dally M Medal champion was the Warriors' best player in a 12-all trial draw with the Titans in Lismore on Saturday night.
Tuivasa-Sheck, 27, said he didn't want to give fans a reason to doubt his commitment to the Warriors in his final year at the club.
"That's not on my mind at the moment," he said.
"I'm just trying to play good footy, prepare really well and get myself ready to focus on the team.
"If people say that (I'm not committed), then they say that. There will be noise regardless of how I perform. I can only control what I can control.
"I'm really determined (to have a good season). It's my last year at the club and it's a special club to me. I want to give it all I can.
"I try to be the best I can every year and I won't do anything less this year. I will keep doing that."
The Warriors were slow out of the blocks in the Titans trial, which was new coach Nathan Brown's first game in charge.
They will face the Titans again in Round 1 of the NRL season on Saturday week and Tuivasa-Sheck said the Warriors had adapted to being based in Australia.
"It's a lot easier this time around," he said.
"We have planned for this and prepared for it. It is the new norm. It's the way the world is operating.
"I'm just grateful to be working again and to have my family with me.
"We came out excited and jumpy and felt scrappy. It was good to get a game out of the way. Hopefully in round one we can be a lot more controlled and patient."
Originally published as Broncos beware! Gus pinpoints his chosen one