Zak Hardaker explains Leigh Leopards exit as Hull FC move from 2025 is confirmed

Ben Olawumi
Zak Hardaker, Hull FC badge

Zak Hardaker's move to Hull FC from 2025 has been confirmed

Zak Hardaker insists that a contract offer from a club ‘like Hull FC’ is one you ‘sit up and listen to’, as his move to the MKM Stadium from 2025 is confirmed.

LoveRugbyLeague exclusively revealed FC’s interest in the 32-year-old back in May, and almost two months on to the day, his signature has now been made public.

Hardaker – a three-time Super League champion – will link up with the Airlie Birds on a two-year deal, and they will become the sixth different club he’s donned a shirt for in the British game having also appeared 11 times in the NRL for Penrith Panthers.

The versatile back will make the move to Hull alongside Leigh captain John Asiata, who himself is joining the Black & Whites on a three-year deal.

Elsewhere, new FC boss John Cartwright will also have Salford Red Devils hooker Amir Bourouh at his disposal come 2025, and playmaker Jordan Abdull, too.

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Zak Hardaker explains Leigh Leopards exit as Hull FC move from 2025 is confirmed

Hardaker joined Leigh as they re-branded under the ‘Leopards tagline ahead of the 2023 season, and has made 44 appearances for Adrian Lam’s side to date, helping them to Challenge Cup glory last August.

But off-contract come the end of the current campaign, the eight-time England international admits he was excited about Hull‘s offer as soon as he heard about it.

Speaking in FC’s press release confirming his signing, the veteran said: “When a club like Hull FC wants to bring you in, you tend to sit up and listen, and I’m really excited to join a club like this for 2025.

“The MKM Stadium has always been a place I’ve loved to come and play at, so I’m looking forward to be calling that my new home ground from next season.

“Next year will be my sixteenth playing professionally, and I hope the experience I’ve gained from all of that time will be really valuable for a lot of the promising youngsters coming through at the club, who I have really enjoyed watching over the last few weeks.”

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Also a two-time Great Britain international, Hardaker ticked past the milestone of 350 career appearances earlier this season.

He and Hull’s Director of Rugby Richie Myler briefly played alongside one another for Leeds in 2022, when the pair helped the Rhinos into the Super League Grand Final.

And Myler had high praise for FC’s newest recruit as he said: “We’re delighted to be adding one of the most experienced outside-backs in the game to our ranks next season in Zak.

“Zak has achieved almost everything there is to achieve in the sport – he is a winner, and we’re hoping he can become one of our key figures over the next couple of years.

“With over 360 senior appearances under his belt, we’re hoping that some of his experiences in the game and the knowledge he has acquired can rub off on some of our talented young outside backs with the likes of Logan Moy, Lewis Martin and Harvey Barron.”

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