Leeds Rhinos confirm Zak Hardaker signing

Josh McAllister
Zak Hardaker

Leeds Rhinos have confirmed the signing of Zak Hardaker for the remainder of the 2022 Super League season.

Hardaker, 30, was released by Wigan earlier last week to pursue opportunities closer to his family base in Yorkshire.

The England international originally joined Leeds from Featherstone. He went on to win four Grand Finals, two Challenge Cups and a League Leaders Shield. Hardaker left the Rhinos during the 2016 season having made 155 appearances and scoring 67 tries. He went on to join Penrith Panthers in the NRL. He won the Man of Steel in the treble winning season of 2015.

Hardaker was dropped by Matt Peet for dropping below standards off the pitch, and didn’t feature over their Easter period.

Gary Hetherington on Zak Hardaker signing

Leeds Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington commented: “We have had to move quickly to secure the services of Zak for the remainder of the season.

“Unfortunately, we have suffered injuries to our backline with Liam Sutcliffe and Tom Briscoe the latest to join that list during Friday night’s win over Toulouse. Centre and full-back, in particular, are areas where we have long term injuries to Harry Newman and Jack Walker and Zak will provide experienced cover in both these positions.

“I have spoken to Zak on a number of occasions over the last few days. He spoke with Rohan Smith over the weekend. The short-term contract works for all parties in this unique situation, and I am sure Zak will be aiming to show his best form on the field now he is back in blue and amber.

“Credit must also go to Jamie Jones-Buchanan who was open to welcoming his former team mate back into our environment.”

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