Yet another talent with big prospects within the Manly Warringah Sea Eagles ranks is Tolu Koula.
Coming out of Newington College, Koula has remained a long-term member of the club’s development pathways – playing fullback for the 2018 UNE Harold Matthews Cup winning side – and was immediately elevated to the NRL top-30 after completing his HSC in 2020.
Koula is also one of the quickest at the club, holding the current GPS Schoolboys Open 100m record of 10.58 seconds which he set in 2019. So he certainly has the athleticism to match the talent.
Earning the opportunity to spend a pre-season in the first grade squad has been a boon for Koula after a 2020 season that saw all junior representative competitions cancelled.
In 2021 the 19-year-old made great progress, initially returning to the SG Ball side early in the year as they reached the semi-finals and later earning his spot in The Knock-On Effect NSW Cup side, debuting for the Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles.
Koula added some attacking firepower to the side during his five-game stint on the wing, producing five tries, three line-breaks, one line-break assist and five offloads with an average of three tackle busts and 144.8 run metres per match.
Now midway through the 2022 pre-season, Koula is one of the next in line in a Manly squad with upside everywhere as they look to build momentum from a 2021 campaign that entertained fans with an expansive, high-tempo playing style.
While the youth in the side will only improve with more NRL experience, Koula shouldn’t have any problems getting in on the action if the opportunity presents itself.