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Bradford Bulls: Chev Walker wants a piece of the action
Chev Walker has set his sights on forcing his way back into the Bulls side and proving he is worthy of a new deal.
The centre, 29, sustained a nerve problem in his arm during the home defeat to Salford City Reds and has not played for the first team since, missing the last eight games.
But he has featured in the Under-20s’ last two outings against London Broncos and Salford and is determined to re-establish himself in Mick Potter’s plans.
Walker is one of 17 players out of contract at the end of the year and would love to stay at Odsal beyond this season.
“I’ve been fit for the past few weeks but just not been selected more than anything,” said the former Leeds man.
“I’m one of those players who respects the coach’s call and I’m all for the squad rather than myself.
I’m not going to spit my dummy out and say that I should be in. I’m just keeping my head down and working hard for my chanceChev Walker
“If that’s what fits for the squad then so be it.
“I’m working hard to get my chance and when I do I’ll be looking to grab it with both hands.”
Walker began the season as one of Potter’s first-choice centres and also performed well in the second row. He was outstanding in the stunning comeback win at Hull KR and then played his part in the victory against St Helens the following week.
But then came his latest cruel injury setback against Salford on March 25.
Walker recalled: “The Hull KR game was a bit of a stand-out for me and I just felt like I was getting into a bit of form.
“I was moved out of position the week after against Saints but that’s what happens when you’ve got a good squad like we have.
“Like I say, I’m not going to spit my dummy out and say that I should be in. I’m just keeping my head down and working hard for my chance.”
Despite the uncertainty surrounding the Bulls as players, staff and supporters await the outcome of the strategic financial review currently being conducted by the club’s majority shareholders, Walker is hopeful of staying at Odsal.
The former Great Britain international is in his second year at the club after an injury-ravaged debut campaign last season.
He said: “I’ve no idea what’s going to be happening but I really enjoy it here and I’ve said that from day one.
“Even though everything has been upside down for the last few months, you still enjoy going in.
“That means a lot and I would like to stay. I still get that buzz from being out on the park. Nothing beats that.”
Walker faces stiff competition for a centre berth from Adrian Purtell, Keith Lulia and Michael Platt, while the battle for spots in the back row is arguably even fiercer.
Yet he is ready to take his chance should he be called upon against the Rhinos at the Magic Weekend in Manchester on Sunday.
Leeds-born Walker made his debut for the Rhinos as a 16-year-old in 1999 and admitted: “I’d love nothing more than to be involved this weekend.
“To play against your old club and your former team-mates is always good.
“It’s a big occasion and it’s going to be a good weekend I’m sure.
“The likes of Bails (Ryan Bailey), Kevin Sinfield, Rob Burrow, Danny Mags (McGuire) and Smithy (Lee Smith) are still there from my time at Headingley.
“As a team we’ve come on leaps and bounds since last year and proved we know how to win games.”
Ben Thaler will referee Sunday’s clash at the Etihad Stadium, with Steve Ganson the video referee.