Nathan Walker- Australia's First NHL Player

Nathan Walker- Australia's First NHL Player

Nathan Walker is hoping his historic NHL debut for the Washington Capitals will inspire other Australians to follow his trailblazing path.

 

Walker became the first Australian to play in the elite North American ice hockey league and made more history when he capped it off with a goal in his team’s 6-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens in Washington DC on Sunday. “Hopefully I can inspire them a little bit (that) it can be done from Australia,” Walker said. “If they have dreams to follow them and definitely pursue them and do what it takes to get where they want to go.”

 

It has been a long, arduous journey for the 23-year-old from Sydney’s Sutherland Shire who stands just 173cm tall. He was first inspired to play ice hockey after watching his older brother on the ice and decided at 11 he wanted to play professionally. In Sydney his opportunities were limited because he could only play on the ice once a week. His parents Ceri and Wayne backed their son and at the age of just 13 Walker flew to the Czech Republic and boarded with a family. His mum stayed for 10 days, but then had to return to Australia, describing it as the hardest decision of her life.

 

Walker continued to battle the odds, playing in Europe and then junior US leagues, was selected by the Capitals in the 2014 NHL Draft, played with the Capitals’ affiliate team the Hershey Bears and overcame injuries including a torn anterior cruciate ligament.

 

source: http://www.theaustralian.com.au

editor

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