Super League return confirmed for former Man of Steel Luke Gale

Drew Darbyshire
Luke Gale Keighley Cougars SWpix

Photo: Olly Hassell/SWpix

Former Man of Steel Luke Gale has returned to Super League with strugglers Wakefield after a short spell in the Championship with Keighley.

The 34-year-old has penned a deal with Trinity until the end of the 2024 campaign.

Gale has made more than 350 career appearances for Doncaster, London Broncos, Bradford, Castleford, Leeds, Hull and Keighley. He has won 10 caps for England, with his last international appearance coming in the 2017 World Cup final.

Wakefield head coach Mark Applegarth, said: “I am delighted we have secured Luke until the end of the 2024 season.

“We have brought him in to direct the team around the field and bring some leadership alongside Mason (Lino). He is a player who has been at the top and knows what it takes to play at this level; and get results consistently.

“We believe that Luke will play a vital role at the club over the next 18 months as we rebuild the playing group, leading some of the younger players around the field.

“I am looking forward to working with him and we thank Keighley for their co-operation.”

Looking forward to the challenge

Gale won the Man of Steel award in 2017. He was named in the Super League Dream Team three seasons running in 2015, 2016 and 2017.

Gale said: “I’m really looking forward to the challenge that lies ahead and getting started with the lads.

“There are plenty of talented players in the group. I’m hoping my leadership and voice can guide the players around the park so the likes of Mason Lino can play off the back of that.

“Having played at Belle Vue many times, I know the fans are passionate and love their rugby.

“Our sole focus now is getting back on the field and putting our best foot forward which starts this Friday at Warrington.”

Wakefield are currently rock bottom of the Super League table. They have lost all 10 of their games so far this season.

Luke Gale departs with Keighley’s best wishes

Gale, who joined the Cougars on a one-year contract in the off-season, departs Cougar Park after just nine games for a return to Super League.

The Cougars say they have accepted an undisclosed fee for Gale’s services from Wakefield.

Keighley co-owner Ryan O’Neill said: “We wish Luke well in his move to Wakefield.

“We understand that with the current unknown status surrounding clubs IMG gradings, Luke wanted a guaranteed opportunity to get back into Super League.

“We thank him for his time at Keighley, a truly decent and nice guy who we are sorry to see leave.”

On leaving the Cougars, Gale said: “I would like to thank Keighley Cougars and wish them all the best with the remainder of the season.

“I’ve enjoyed my time and Keighley and would like to pass on my thanks to Ryan and Kaue (Garcia), the board of directors, the players, coaching staff and fans.”

Gale could make his first appearance for Wakefield in their trip to Warrington on Friday night.

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