Jamie Lyon says Manly team-mate Dylan Walker could provide the ‘X Factor’ when he makes his NSW debut on Wednesday night.
Walker has been named on the interchange bench by NSW Coach Laurie Daley because of his utility value.
“Dylan is a quality player and he deserves to be there. He has played for Australia and has got that bit of X factor about him,’’ Lyon said.
“I wasn’t surprised to see him picked. He is a very good player and I would have definitely had him in the side.
“Dylan is a footballer. He can play anywhere. He has played in grand finals. He will be fine. I’m very excited to see him get out there.
“I don’t think the occasion will affect him. He is pretty cocky. He is a good young kid and I really love having him around the joint here.”
Manly and Queensland Assistant Coach Anthony Seibold says Walker offers plenty of value to the Blues.
“Dylan is a perfect interchange player because he can play in the halves, centres, and at full-back,’’ Seibold said.
“With the new concussion rules, to have someone like Dylan on the bench, is a really useful tool. To have someone who can play multiple positions now is really important.
“I love Dylan as a bloke and I am really proud of him making the NSW Origin side, but for the 80 minutes on Wednesday night, I want our side to win. That’s what my focus will be.
“As soon as we finish the game, I will go and check on him and make sure he pulled up okay and then both of our attention will turn to our Canberra Raiders game on Friday night.”
Manly centre Steve Matai said Walker could prove very dangerous late in the game.
“When everyone is tired, he could create some havoc with his footwork and his speed,’’ Matai said.
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