Frayssinous plays down Hardaker link

This article originally appeared in League Express, read it first by getting your copy in stores every Monday or online at

Catalans head coach Laurent Frayssinous has played down speculation linking England international Zak Hardaker with a move to Perpignan.

League Express understands talks between the Dragons and Hardaker’s representatives have taken place with a view to bringing the former Leeds Rhino to the Stade Gilbert Brutus in a big-money move.

Hardaker, 24, was transfer listed by the Headingley club in June and the Rhinos placed a £300,000 price tag on the fullback.

The ex-Featherstone Rovers star joined NRL side Penrith Panthers three weeks after being transfer listed, as part of a swap deal which saw James Segeyaro come the other way.

League Express understands that Hardaker is likely to be a Dragon in 2017 although several other clubs are thought to be interested.

But Catalans chief Frayssinous, a nine-time French international, says he has not spoken to Hardaker.

“I have never been in contact with Zak or his manager,” insisted Frayssinous, who flashed a bright smile as he answered.

“What I do know is that Zak is a good player, an international player.

“But, no, nobody has contacted me regarding him.”

Hardaker joined Penrith until the end of the current season, but is still contracted to Leeds for next season.