Rugby league fans may have recognised a familiar face if they tuned in to the new season of The Block on Channel 9, with former NRL winger Omar Slaimankhel appearing as a contestant.

But while he revealed that he had played in the NRL and moved into rugby, few would be aware of how prolific he was at the games youth and development levels.

Pakistan-born Slaimankhel came through the Warriors system and proved a talented junior, playing at fullback as the Warriors claimed the 2011 NRL Under-20s title and making the Team of the Year.

Other names from that talented list include Dane Gagai, James Roberts, Dale Finucane, Jason Taumalolo, Tim Lafai, Kyle Feldt, Jack de Belin, Konrad Hurrell, Mahe Fonua and Kenny Bromwich.

He went on to make his NRL debut for the Warriors in 2012, playing five games before taking a lucrative deal to play Japanese rugby.

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After a fruitful stint, he returned to Australia and rugby league in 2015. He signed on with the Roosters and started playing with feeder club Wyong Roos in the NSW Cup.

He helped the Roos to the grand final, where they were ultimately defeated by Newcastle, but he was once again named in the competition's Team of the Year. That side also featured Shaun Lane, Damien Cook and Mitch Barnett.

He came close to the cusp of an NRL return and was named to play in the Auckland 9’s for the Roosters in 2016, but he suffered an untimely arm injury on the second day of the tournament.

The 30-year-old has since played in the third-tier Ron Massey Cup for a number of teams and will now appear on screens for the next season of the popular show.

According to his profile on The Block page, Slaimankhel is heading overseas in the near future to play rugby sevens for Afghanistan.