‘I feel like I should defend myself’: Cooper Cronk responds to reports of rift with Sam Walker’s family after young half dropped to NSW Cup


Sydney Roosters assistant coach Cooper Cronk has responded to claims of a rift between himself and young halfback Sam Walker’s family after Walker was dropped from the NRL side for this weekend’s round.

Cronk was asked about a Sydney Morning Herald report that Walker’s family including father Chris were frustrated at how Walker’s playing style was being managed at the Bondi club.

“I understand it’s a huge talking point and you need to ask those questions no doubt and you should grill me,” Cronk said on Fox League.

“But the thing about this situation is, I feel like I should defend myself and my position but it’s not about me… it’s about Sam.

“I think he’s the most important part in all of this and my job is to help Sam to be the best version of himself – both on and off the field.

“My job is to do that and I’ll do that as long as I can.

“I’ll give every little bit of energy I can to that. I don’t think it’s about me, this is about Sam and he’ll be back.

“There is room for Sam in every team, in any structure, any play.

“The kid can play and if he puts a couple of things together he’ll be a very dominant half in this competition for a long, long time.”

Newcastle needs their poster boy captain back but can we let Kalyn Ponga be himself again before we throw him back into the Origin arena?

Meanwhile Panthers coach Ivan Cleary has questioned a vital Rabbitohs try in the final stages that led to his side’s shock loss to South Sydney in Thursday night football.

Cleary called out the decision to award Souths their second last try of the evening with the ball appearing to go backwards of Latrell Mitchell’s hand.

“I just thought it was the bounce of the ball a bit tonight… I mean the second last try was very dubious I would have thought.”

Panthers play Wests Tigers next round in Bathurst.

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