When did you  start playing?

My dad took me to my local club, North Ribblesdale, when I was about six. He played union and league but I have only played union. I would like to try league.

Have you always played at hooker?

I started at fly-half but got kicked into the forwards when they realised I was too slow and heavy. I was a back-row and moved to hooker when I joined Leeds when I was 14. I didn’t have much choice about the move but I’ve never looked back because I enjoy the physical side.

What was it like to be a Jaguar Academy of Sport rising star in 2012? 

Amazing. Dave Flatman became my mentor through that and he’s class. I speak with him about once a month.

How do you find playing senior games in the Leeds pack at the age of only 17? 

It’s good. It’s a lot faster and everyone is massive! I have been a bit achy the next day but not too bad.

You made your England U18 debut against Australia in December in an all-Leeds front row…

That was awesome. We’ve got a lot of good young players at Leeds.

What are your aims now? 

My aim this season was to play for England U18 and, if I worked hard enough, to have a chance of getting into the U20 squad too. I work on my rugby every day, whether it’s lineouts or whatever. But I love doing it. There is nothing I would change about my life.

RW verdict: Earmarked for the top since he led England U16, Walker is making good progress.
This Hotshot was published in the February 2014 edition of Rugby World. Click here to see what’s in the current edition of the mag!