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Okunbor's journey to NRL debut

Jayden Okunbor will this weekend make his NRL debut for the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs after being named in Dean Pay’s squad to face the Wests Tigers on Sunday at Campbelltown Stadium.

A local junior from the Milperra Colts, Okunbor joined the club’s NRL top 30 for the first time in 2019 after graduating through the ranks of the Bulldogs, including graduating from the club's High-Performance youth program, before playing his first full year as an under 20s player in season 2016.

Over the past two seasons, the 22-year old has been a regular member of the club’s reserve grade side and featured in last year’s successful Intrust Super Premiership team that claimed the Premiership and the National State Championship.

“When Deano told me, it felt like it was a dream really. When I broke the news to my loved ones, they reassured me that it was going to happen. It’s something that I have worked so hard for, for so long and to finally get the opportunity, it means everything to me,” Okunbor added.

Okunbor: It felt like a dream

Having played his junior footy within the Canterbury-Bankstown district, the winger will join the likes of Trent Cutler, Justin Holbrook, Greg Barwick, Daniel Heckenberg and Tim Winitana to make their NRL debut from the Milperra Colts club.

“It has been a long journey, but I feel like my time is right. I have waited long enough and hopefully I can get out there and show people what I have got.”

Schooled at Picnic Point High School, Okunbor stands at 196cm and tips the scales at 108kg, crossed the try-line on eight occasions from his 25 appearances for the club's 2018 ISP side and averaged 109.9m per game.

Away from the field, Jayden is currently completing a Certificate IV in Youth Work and has a Certificate IV in Education Support, as well as being an Advocate for the NRL’s State of Mind program.