Walker v Chambers spat a dead heat as fierce NRL rivalry continues

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Manly Sea Eagles centre Dylan Walker is pictured. Also pictured is Cronulla Sharks centre Will Chambers.
Manly Sea Eagles' utility back Dylan Walker and Cronulla Sharks centre Will Chambers shared a few choice words on Monday night during their clash. Source: AAP

The all-knowing, all-seeing world of social media declared the Will Chambers v Dylan Walker spat a dead heat – with neither topping the "leading flog" list.

Cronulla's Chambers was trending on Twitter after smashing Walker and giving him a follow-up spray, continuing the barrage even as Manly continued to pile on the points at Suncorp on Monday night.

For every fan bagging the Sharks veteran, there was one defending him simply because his target was Walker.

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The Manly No.14 remains hugely unpopular due to his antics on and off the field over the years.

And that's not just anti-Sea Eagles supporters.

Plenty in the maroon and white corner were happy to cross the room and declare their dislike for Walker.

Those good at lip reading claim Chambers referenced Walker's past legal run-ins after cleaning him up in one of the hits of the season.

The Melbourne premiership winner is said to read up on his rivals' past before games to give himself extra ammunition in the verbal department.

One former player who knows a thing or two about polarising fans – big Willie Mason – left no doubt whose corner he was in.

He tweeted he would have "done worse" had his got his hands on Walker.

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But it's fair to say there were plenty in the pro-Walker camp.

They pointed out Chambers was having a shocker in a badly defeated team and came across as a goose for carrying on.

Sharks interim coach Josh Hannay obviously agreed, hooking the 33-year-old towards the end of the game and later declaring he wasn't a fan of the abuse.

Chambers missed five tackles and may have played his last NRL game – at least as a starting player – if Hannay wants to begin looking towards the future.

Tough as they come

Question an NRL player's form and skill all you like but never doubt their toughness, especially those who don't come anywhere near threatening 100kgs on the scales.

Nathan Cleary played through an Origin match with a busted shoulder, refusing to give in to the pain.

It's an injury that would have most of us sooking on the couch complaining that lifting a can to our lips hurts too much, yet Cleary is readying for a return where he knows that shoulder will have a big red bullseye on it.

In this handout image provided by NRL Photos Ben Hunt of the Dragons looks on during the round 20 NRL match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
Dragons skipper Ben Hunt played in his side's clash with South Sydney with a broken arm. Source: NRL Photos via Getty Images

Mitchell Moses, deputising for Cleary in Origin III, suffered a crack in his back but played through discomfort to deliver a sound performance on debut in the toughest environment of them all.

He, too, will attempt a comeback this month.

Now comes news St George Illawarra's Ben Hunt played the last 20 minutes of Sunday's loss to Souths with a broken arm.

That's after suffering in silence after fracturing his leg and playing on against Manly earlier in the year.

Think about that next time you’re tempted to label a player "soft".

Is there a tougher sport out there?

Watch 'Mind Games', the new series from Yahoo Sport Australia exploring the often brutal mental toil elite athletes go through in pursuit of greatness:

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