Melbourne Heart's full-back Jeremy Walker admits it was a ''great shock" when he found out he was selected in Paul Okon's 24-man squad for a Qantas Young Socceroos camp between 21-25 April.
Melbourne Heart's full-back Jeremy Walker admits it was a ''great shock" when he found out he was selected in Paul Okon's 24-man squad for the Qantas Young Socceroos camp this week.
Walker experienced a break-through season with the Red and White, which saw the Tasmanian step up from the Club's National Youth League side and earn a senior contract after 13 matches in the Hyundai A-League.
Walker's latest reward for his efforts and endeavour is a place in Okon's preliminary selection phase for the upcoming FIFA under-20 World Cup Turkey 2013.
“It was a great shock when I heard the news,” Walker said.
“It-s my first involvement as well so I was happy about that and, hopefully, I can go there and train hard and do well and get to the next camp after that.
“I think things have progressed well and I am happy with the way things have gone.
“At the start of the season, I didn-t expect to be playing regularly, but I-ve ended up with 12-13 games and now this comes along, so it keeps on getting more positive.
“It-s a dream come true, I didn-t think it would happen.
“I-ve missed out on a lot of camps previously, under-17s and under-19s, but I-ve put in a lot of hard work and hopefully I get another couple more [call-ups].”
Fellow Heart youngsters Benjamin Garuccio and David Vrankovic were also called up into the 24-player squad.
Garuccio said Walker had deserved his call-up and it was positive to see three Heart players in the squad
"It's good to see Jeremy Walker who hasn't been involved before getting the call-up; he 100 per cent deserves it," Garuccio said.
But the trio should expect a tough camp with quality players selected from across A-League clubs.
"Each time it gets tougher and tougher because other boys get their chance and young boys playing for the national team - most of the time they do take [the opportunity]," Garuccio said.
"There are a lot of boys playing regular A-League so it's going to be very, very tough."
There were plenty of messages on social media praising the trio's selection: