My Ultimate Team: Luke Gale selects his best 1-17 including Castleford, Leeds, England stars

Aaron Bower

Former Steve Prescott MBE Man of Steel winner and England international Luke Gale is our next guest on My Ultimate Team, in which we ask the stars of the game to pick their greatest side built of current and former team-mates.

Gale has had a long career at the top of Super League, featuring for the likes of Leeds Rhinos, Castleford Tigers and Hull FC, winning the Man of Steel award in 2017 while at the Tigers. He also featured in the 2017 World Cup for England, and is currently playing with Championship side Wakefield Trinity.

Speaking exclusively with Love Rugby League, here is Gale’s all-star 17 of his favourite players he played with throughout his career.

1. Zak Hardaker

I’ve been lucky to play with a lot of good fullbacks but the best was Zak. I love Luke Dorn, he was class, but Zak came in and took us to another level. He’s so under-rated defensively too – and I hope Dorny isn’t reading this after I’ve said that!

2. Ryan Hall

Ryan Hall Hull KR Alamy
Ryan Hall scores a try for Hull KR in 2024

Every time I played with Hally, he scored for England: every single time. His record is absolutely ridiculous for Test level and I remember playing the Aussies, they wouldn’t give you much but they thought we were all average except for Ryan and Jermaine McGillvary. Hally was unplayable at his best.

3. Jake Webster

This was a tough call, I was torn between Kallum Watkins – who was unbelievable in the 2017 World Cup, but I only played a few games with him. I loved playing with Jakey; we called him Tony Two Lap because he’d always go out and do two laps of the field after the games! He was great for that group, and he scored more tries than you thought.

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4. Michael Shenton

It had to be Shenny, the captain at Castleford. Pretty straightforward, one of my running mates on that left-hand side.

5. Denny Solomona

This was a tough one, but it is essentially the full left-edge we had so much success with at Castleford with another one to come on the bench!

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6. Ben Roberts

It was a hard one to pick, but I really liked playing with Benny. Teams started putting an extra defender on our left edge and if they did that, Ben had such a good running threat that he’d take that gap and exploit it. I just thought we dovetailed really well.

7. Myself!

Luke Gale in action for Wakefield against Hull KR. Photo by Dean Williams/Alamy Stock Photo.
Luke Gale in action for Wakefield against Hull KR. Photo by Dean Williams/Alamy Stock Photo.

I’ve never played with another number seven! I’ve had loads of stick for saying this, saying I can’t put myself in my best 13.. but I’ve not played with a scrum-half!

8. Sam Burgess

Sam Burgess England 2017 Rugby League World Cup final Alamy
England captain Sam Burgess in action in the 2017 Rugby League World Cup final – Alamy

That one speaks for itself, I think.

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9. Paul McShane

Paul McShane on team-mate Rob Burrow
Picture by John Clifton/

Macca.. he knew my game inside and out and I think I knew his. That’s massive for a seven, to have a nine who you could have such a great relationship with. I’ve played with some great number nines.. James Roby, Daz Clark, but Macca for me made me a better player.

10. James Graham

James Graham England World Cup SWpix
Photo: Allan McKenzie/SWpix

Much like Sam Burgess, this was a pretty obvious one. He was unreal in those England games we played together in. Him and Sam, you’d look up to them and if you had to play the Aussies, you’d want them by your side.

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11. Elliott Whitehead

Elliott Whitehead, England
Elliott Whitehead crosses for a try on his final appearance for England – Alamy

I played with him at Bradford and England, and he’s been class for so long. It’s good to see how much he’s grown; he nearly retired at Bradford, he was done with the game, so to see him go on and do what he’s done is absolutely brilliant. He’s my best pal.

12. Oliver Holmes

I did this about a month ago at a dinner and people were laughing at me for this, and they named about six or seven back-rowers I’ve played with – but in that 2017 team, Ogi was just unreal.

13. Grant Millington

I had to get Millo in somewhere. He’s unreal as a bloke and unreal as a player.


John Bateman, SWPix.
Picture by Allan McKenzie/

Luke Dorn, John Bateman, Adam Milner, Greg Eden

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