Rumour Mill: A player linked with each Super League club

James Gordon

It’s silly season in the rugby league transfer market, as clubs are free to speak to players who are off contract at the end of the year, as of May 1.

For each Super League club, we take a look at a player that has been linked with them over recent weeks.

Castleford – Sam Wood

There’ll be plenty of movement in and out of The Jungle at the end of the season, with several players off contract and new coach Andy Last wanting to put his stamp on the team.

Barring a miraculous Wakefield recovery, it doesn’t look like the Tigers will be dragged in to relegation concern despite their poor form.

That should enable them to crack on with recruiting, and Last has already publicly confirmed a move for Hull KR’s Sam Wood.

In a recent press conference, Last appeared confident of bringing in the former Huddersfield man, saying talks had been positive.

Wood, 25, has established himself in the Robins first team over the past two seasons, playing at centre or on the wing, and news of his possible departure from Hull KR came as a surprise to some.

Wakefield forward Jordan Crowther and ex-St Helens winger Josh Simm have also been linked with moves to Castleford.

Catalans – Kruise Leeming

Kruise Leeming Leeds Rhinos SWpix Photo: Paul Currie/SWpix

Kruise Leeming is currently plying his trade in the NRL with Gold Coast Titans following his swift exit from Leeds earlier this season.

The 27-year-old hooker has linked up with Super League winning coach Justin Holbrook, and it will no doubt be hoping to prove himself in the NRL to maybe earn a deal Down Under for 2024.

But returning to Super League looks the most likely scenario, and Catalans have been the most heavily linked side to him, with their first choice number nine Michael McIlorum turning 36 before the start of next season.

Previously with Huddersfield, Leeming twice played against England for the Combined Nations All Stars in recent years.

Huddersfield – Adam Milner

Adam Milner Castleford Tigers News Images Photo: James Heaton/News Images

This move was officially confirmed by Huddersfield on Thursday evening, with Adam Milner making the move on a season-long loan from Castleford, before joining on a permanent contract.

Milner has previously made 301 appearances for the Tigers and was a one-club man, but will add some much-needed experience to Ian Watson’s squad at the John Smith’s Stadium.

The loose forward or hooker had been close to making a switch to Wakefield earlier this season, before the plug was pulled at the last minute.

Hull – Liam Tindall

Liam Tindall Leeds Rhinos News Images Photo: James Heaton/News Images

Leeds confirmed that young winger Liam Tindall will depart Headingley at the end of the season, and Hull FC appears to be his likely destination.

The 21-year-old has featured for Bradford in the Championship on dual-registration this season, with Leeds planning to replace him with someone from within the club.

Rhinos coach Rohan Smith said: “I’m not quite sure why or how things intend to be announced but we made an offer that hasn’t been accepted and I believe another one has.”

Hull have been linked with a number of players as Tony Smith looks to put his own mark on a squad inherited from Brett Hodgson when he took over at the back end of last year.

Hull KR – Oliver Gildart

Oliver Gildart. PA

Former England international Oliver Gildart is reportedly heading back to Super League after a disappointing stint in the NRL.

After moving to Wests Tigers from Wigan, Gildart struggled to break in to the first team and ended up going out on loan to Sydney Roosters.

For 2023, he moved on to new NRL club Dolphins under ex-England coach Wayne Bennett, but he has still found opportunities hard to come by.

He has been playing for Central Queensland Capras in the Queensland Cup and has even disappeared from England contention since his move.

Hull Live reporter Joe Appleyard said of the links: “The news that Hull KR are the frontrunners to sign Oliver Gildart hasn’t been met with unanimous approval. Though you do have to question why.

“Looking at the bigger picture, acquiring a 26-year-old England international with NRL experience who has won almost everything the British game has to offer doesn’t just seem like an astute bit of business from the Robins, but indeed, it is. Welcoming back one of the hottest prospects Super League has produced as he heads into his prime shouldn’t be overlooked.”

Hull KR have already announced Peta Hiku as a replacement for the departing Lachlan Coote, while Shaun Kenny-Dowall’s planned exit will also leave big shoes to fill. They are currently embroiled in a transfer saga with Salford prop Tyler Dupree, having had two bids rejected for the new England international.

Leeds – Luke Brooks

Leeds have been keeping their cards close to their chests over their recruitment, with half-back believed to be a key position of interest.

A few months ago, they were linked with a big money move for Wests Tigers half-back Luke Brooks by The Mole.

But Tim Sheens has come out recently to say they want to keep Brooks, and it would seem unlikely that any Super League club could compete with the sort of money on offer in the NRL.

Both Aidan Sezer and Blake Austin are out of contract at Headingley at the end of the year.

Leigh – Owen Trout

Owen Trout Huddersfield Giants SWpix Photo: Alex Whitehead/SWpix

For the first time in Super League, Leigh can now start planning for a second season in the top flight with confidence and that will boost their recruitment no end.

One man reportedly heading to the Leopards is highly-rated Huddersfield prop Owen Trout, who has opted to seek options elsewhere.

He has been ruled out for the rest of the 2023 season, giving him plenty of time to consider his options – with Hull and Castleford interested, according to Examiner Live.

Salford – Brad Singleton

Brad Singleton Wigan Warriors SWpix
Photo: Paul Currie/SWpix

Despite plenty of attention over their crowdfunding and share sale, Salford have still been diligently going about their business for 2024 and beyond.

Although the saga surrounding Tyler Dupree will no doubt be unwelcome, their movements in the market have been encouraging.

Wigan prop Brad Singleton, Hull KR winger Ethan Ryan (as reported by Hull Live) and Hull FC’s Adam Swift have all been linked with a move to the Red Devils, who as well as signing players, will be equally keen to retain their talent in the wake of Brodie Croft’s monster new deal signed in the autumn.

St Helens – Daryl Clark

Daryl Clark Warrington Wolves News Images England Photo: Craig Thomas/News Images

A move that seems nailed on is that of hooker Daryl Clark swapping Warrington for St Helens.

Saints are in the market for a number nine due to the impending retirement of club legend James Roby, while it is thought they are not completely convinced by Joey Lussick as a starting hooker.

Warrington are happy with Danny Walker to be their first choice hooker and are strongly linked with bringing Brad Dwyer back to the club.

They had offered Clark a deal to stay, but the length of the contract was believed to be a sticking point and the Wolves moved on.

Clark moved to Warrington from Castleford in 2015 and has made 226 appearances.

Wakefield – David Fifita

Super League David Fifita Wakefield Trinity and Dom Peyroux Toulouse Olympique SWpix
Wakefield’s David Fiftia shaking hands with Dom Peyroux of Toulouse | Photo: Allan McKenzie/SWpix

Wakefield coach Mark Applegarth revealed that they have two recruitment plans – based on whether they can survive in Super League or not.

The precariousness of their situation means signing players is increasingly difficult, something that they also struggled with last season and could partly be attributed to their struggles in 2023 to date.

A sensational breaking news story from Yorkshire Live (fortunately just in time for this article) revealed that former favourite David Fifita is close to answering a SOS to come out of retirement and steer Trinity to safety.

Warrington – Kelepi Tanginoa

Kelepi Tanginoa, Super League Round 9. SWPix Picture by Allan McKenzie/

Warrington have kept their powder dry since the surprise departure of Thomas Mikaele, who left barely a third of the way into the season to return Down Under.

Daryl Powell insisted they wouldn’t be rushed in to a replacement, though they did explore the market. One target in Super League was highly-rated Wakefield forward Kelepi Tanginoa, but there was some surprise over the level of his deal at Trinity.

Given the situation at Wakefield, they are keen to keep hold of their better players – though with their Super League future looking severely in doubt, a move for Tanginoa could be on the horizon sooner or later.

The Wolves had also been linked with NRL trio Scott Sorensen, Josh Kerr and Makahesi Makatoa, though nothing came to fruition.

Perhaps unlike in recent seasons, Warrington have remained patient with recruiting – and it appears to be paying off, with them four points clear at the top of Super League.

Wigan – Sam Walters

Sam Walters, SWPix
Picture by Alex Whitehead/

Promising young forward Sam Walters looks like slipping from Leeds grasp and making the move to Wigan for 2024.

Walters came through the academy at Widnes and was signed by the Rhinos when the Vikings were in administration in 2019.

His frustration at his lack of game time has been attributed to his decision to leave Headingley, and he has now fallen out of favour since opting to go elsewhere, much to the frustration of some of the club’s fans.

Leeds Live reported that the Rhinos had tried to keep Walters, but the Widnes-born prop now looks set to return to the west of the Pennines.

Who would you like to see at your club in 2024?