BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 24: Cody Walker of the Rabbitohs celebrates with team mates after scoring a try during the NRL Preliminary Final match between the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the Manly Sea Eagles at Suncorp Stadium on September 24, 2021 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

Incoming South Sydney Rabbitohs coach Jason Demetriou has confirmed Cody Walker can expect to play the same role as he did during a 2021 season which saw him finish third in the Dally M Medal.

It had been thought Walker would be required to step into more of a game manager's role.

That train of thought followed the announcement that star halfback Adam Reynolds was set to join the Brisbane Broncos on a new deal, bringing his long stint at Redfern to a close.

Walker's time at five-eighth was simply outstanding in 2021, finishing with 33 try assists on his way to an appearance in the grand final, although the Rabbitohs couldn't get the job done over the Penrith Panthers at Suncorp Stadium.

CODY WALKER
Five-eighth
Rabbitohs
2021 SEASON AVG
1.3
Try Assists
0.6
Tries
115.2
Kick Metres

He may have become the best five-eighth in the game, but despite a new halves partner, Demetriou told Nine News that he has no intentions of changing it.

“Cody’s role won’t change,” Demetriou said.

“I know what he brings to the team and it’s my job to put the players in and around him, and keep letting him do what he does.

“He has just had a breakout season and it’s not about him reinventing his game – his game is outstanding and one of the most elite in the competition.”

Walker will likely be partnered by either Blake Taaffe or Lachlan Ilias in the halves, with a steep learning curve in front of whichever youngster Demetriou selects.

NEWCASTLE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 09: Blake Taaffe of the Rabbitohs passes during the round 17 NRL match between the South Sydney Rabbitohs and the North Queensland Cowboys at McDonald Jones Stadium, on July 09, 2021, in Newcastle, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Anthony Milford has also joined the club, but he is likely to take over Benji Marshall's jersey number 14 on the bench, and, at any rate, has proven himself to be a far better player when not in control of the kicking game during his time at the Brisbane Broncos.

Walker's role at five-eighth did handle kicking from time to time however, and the first half-hour of South Sydney's preliminary final against the Manly Sea Eagles in Week 3 of the finals was a perfect example of that, with Reynolds struggling due to an injury concern and unable to contribute.

Walker kicked every general play kick for the first half an hour and did a superb job as the Rabbitohs galloped away to an early lead.

The star five-eight recently signed a contract extension to stay at Redfern until at least the end of 2023.