How Leigh Centurions are shaping up for 2022

Drew Darbyshire
Leigh Centurions signings

Leigh Centurions have 19 players registered in their first team ahead of their return to the Championship next season.

The Centurions have a new-look team following their relegation from Super League.

There has been a big change at the club over the off-season. Former Wakefield coach Chris Chester has become the club’s head of rugby, with ex-Wigan boss Adrian Lam taking over as head coach. Tony Clubb, who retired from playing at the end of last season, will assist Lam at Leigh.

LAM ON THE MENU: Adrian Lam on why he chose Leigh Centurions

Kurt Haggerty, who was caretaker coach in 2021, has become assistant to former Leigh coach Paul Rowley at Salford.

In terms of player retentions, the club have given new deals to Adam Sidlow (prop), Mark Ioane (prop), Ben Reynolds (half-back), Joe Mellor (half-back) and Sam Stone (back-row).

The Centurions have signed loanee centre Keanan Brand on a permanent basis from Warrington. They’ve also signed hooker Aaron Smith and utility back Tom Nisbet on season-long loans from St Helens.

Follow Love Rugby League on Instagram

Leigh have made a couple of impressive signings from the NRL, too. Papua New Guinea international Nene Macdonald has joined the club having made almost 100 NRL appearances.

Former Penrith Panthers and Canberra Raiders full-back Caleb Aekins, who qualifies to play for Wales, is all but confirmed to be Leigh’s number one in 2022.

Caleb Aekins

New Leigh signing Caleb Aekins qualifies to play for Wales

Also arriving from the NRL is prop Tom Amone. The powerhouse prop arrives at the Leigh Sports Village having made 17 appearances for South Sydney Rabbitohs and Wests Tigers.

Leigh will also have a number of international test players in their ranks next season, including Ireland’s Ed Chamberlain, Tonga’s Ata Hingano and Scotland’s Joe Wardle.

How Leigh Centurions are shaping up for 2022

Backs: Ed Chamberlain, Jayden Hatton, Tom Nisbet, Luis Roberts, Jy Hitchcox, Caleb Aekins, Keanan Brand, Ata Hingano, Nene Macdonald, Ben Reynolds, Joe Mellor.

Forwards: Aaron Smith, Chris Green, Jacob Jones, Joe Wardle, Adam Sidlow, Mark Ioane, Tom Amone, Sam Stone.

READ MORE: Championship ins and outs for 2022: Signings and retentions club-by-club