Scotland v Italy: Rugby League World Cup
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 16: Daniel Atkinson of Italy looks on during Rugby League World Cup 2021 Pool B match between Scotland and Italy at Kingston Park on October 16, 2022 in Newcastle upon Tyne, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images for RLWC)

Former Melbourne Storm halfback Daniel Atkinson isn't exactly a household name, but the Italian international is turning heads as he looks to secure an NRL contract.

Atkinson played out of position for Italy in their opening match against Scotland, lining up at left centre for the Azzurri, and came up with a number of crucial plays as the European nation opened their account with a 28-4 victory.

The 22 year-old has made a singular NRL appearance, coming off the bench for Melbourne in the last regular season game of 2021, however was released by the club at the end of last year.

A standout for the Sunshine Coast Falcons in 2022, a number of clubs have begun circling the utility for a spot in their Top 30 ahead of next season, including a top four side.

WWOS is reporting that both the Cronulla Sharks and Newcastle Knights are considering throwing the youngster an NRL lifeline, while other clubs continue to track Atkinson's trajectory before making him an offer.

The halfback's tenacity will be put to the test over the next fortnight as Italy comes up against Fiji and Australia, with the Azzurri tipped to lose both clashes and crash out in the group stage.

Not if Atkinson has anything to do with it.

The impressive performances from halfback Radean Robinson and South Sydney five-eighth Jack Campagnolo will see Atkinson remain in the three-quarter line, and ply his trade all the way to an NRL contract in 2023.

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