Longforgan-born Murphy Walker has signed his first professional contract with the Glasgow Warriors after an impressive first few months as an Academy player at Scotstoun.
The 22-year-old began playing rugby with Dundee Eagles – Dundee Rugby Club’s junior wing – and captained Strathallan School to a Scottish Schools Cup win in 2018. He played club rugby with Dundee and latterly with Stirling County in the Super6, as a FOSROC Scotland Academy player.
But since he made his debut for Glasgow against the Cell C Sharks in the United Rugby Championship in October, he’s become a week-to-week squad member at Scotstoun.
The nephew of former Warriors coach and 1990 Grand Slam legend Sean Lineen, Walker played for Scotland at Under-18 and Under-20 level.
“I’m delighted to sign my first pro deal,” he said. “It’s been a big thing I’ve aimed towards the last 18 months.
‘I’m proud to represent my little village’
✍️ Stepping up
One one of the most promising young front-rowers in Scottish rugby has put pen to paper with the club, with Murphy Walker signing his first professional contract with Glasgow Warriors.
— Glasgow Warriors (@GlasgowWarriors) January 11, 2022
“I’ve had some obstacles to overcome with my hamstring injury, and to achieve the goal is unbelievable. I’m proud to play for this club and to represent my family and my little village of Longforgan.
“My parents have been behind me from day one, the day my Dad took me to the Eagles for just a bit of fun. I never expected to be here and to be making a career out of playing the game.”
Walker will be behind fellow Midlander Zander Fagerson, Simon Berghan and Enrique Pieretto – all established internationals – in the depth chart at tight-head prop , but has been working with the group.
“We have a great group who are always driving each other forward,” he said. “Zander and Oli (Kebble) have been massive for my progress scrummaging. Fraser (Brown) worked with me a lot on my skills and setpiece.
“Having guys like that to learn from is amazing. But I don’t think anything changes now I’m a full-time professional.
“I’ve been given this opportunity because of the work I’ve put in. I’m going to train as hard as I can every day to stake a claim in the match day 23.”
‘His attitude has been first-rate’
Walker is likely to get more chances at Six Nations time. Glasgow head coach Danny Wilson said he’d impressed ever since joining the squad.
“His attitude and willingness to put in the hard work on and off the field have been first-rate,” said Wilson. “He’s earned his opportunity and his drive to be a Warrior is clear to see.
“He’s hungry to learn from Zander, Simon and Enrique who have a lot of experience and quality. We believe he’ll go from strength to strength for us.”