Former Queensland Origin prima Chris Walker called his nephew Sam connected Sunday greeting successful the aftermath of the furore implicit his arguable last-second play for the Roosters against the Bulldogs and reminded him of a speech helium erstwhile had with supercoach Wayne Bennett.
Social media went berserk when, with 20 seconds near connected the timepiece and the Roosters clinging to a six-point lead, Sam Walker stunned everyone by taking the shot 10 metres retired … and running 90 metres backwards to his ain tryline arsenic the timepiece ran out.
"Sam has been copping it and I conscionable don't deliberation it is fair," his uncle Chris, a long-time NRL star, told Wide World of Sports.
"He was a spot amazed by each the fuss - we're successful the mediate of a pandemic and you would deliberation radical would person much important things to interest about.
"But I reminded him of a chat I erstwhile had with Wayne Bennett astir fans and critics erstwhile I was going done a hard time.
"Wayne said to me, 'If you perceive to the radical successful the crowd, it won't beryllium agelong earlier you are retired of the crippled and sitting adjacent to them'.
"And helium is 100 per cent close - you've got to play your ain game, perceive to those successful the cognize similar your manager and teammates, and unopen retired those extracurricular voices."
Walker blamed FOX commentator Andrew Voss for overmuch of the vitriol aimed astatine the teenage halfback pursuing the incident.
"Vossy is simply a bully bloke but I thought helium incited things erstwhile helium said that (Bulldog Lachlan) Lewis (who was chasing Walker) should spell up and smash him," helium said.
"That acceptable disconnected the lunatics and it each snowballed.
"But look, I've spoken to Sam this greeting and helium is fine.
"He is not a mug and didn't mean immoderate disrespect to the Bulldogs.
"It was a astute play with 20 seconds near connected the timepiece - if helium kicked the ball, it could person rebounded consecutive to a Bulldog who could person ran the magnitude - you ne'er know.
"I've seen Benji Marshall bash the same, I've seen Tony Iro bash it - but determination wasn't immoderate of this uproar due to the fact that Sam is simply a agleam young kid and radical are looking to instrumentality him down."
For a regular dose of the champion of the breaking quality and exclusive contented from Wide World of Sports, subscribe to our newsletter by clicking here!