Hull confirm Gale signing

Hull FC have confirmed the signing of England international and former Man of Steel winner Luke Gale for the 2022 campaign.

Gale, 33, will join Hull on an initial one-year deal from the Leeds Rhinos, who he captained to Challenge Cup success in 2020.

One of Super League’s stand out halfbacks over the last decade, Gale has amassed over 320 career appearances, scoring 115 tries and kicking 731 goals, representing Harlequins, Bradford, Castleford and Leeds. He is a three-time winner of the Albert Goldthorpe Medal.

He becomes the fourth new name to join Hull ahead of the new season alongside Fijian internationals Kane Evans and Joe Lovodua and England Knights winger Darnell McIntosh.

Gale joined Leeds from Castleford Tigers in October 2019, on a three-year contract. At Hull he will replace Marc Sneyd, who has joined Salford Red Devils.

His possible exit has looked on the cards since he was stripped of the captaincy at Headingley in July this year, while the Rhinos have recruited star halfbacks Aidan Sezer from Huddersfield and Blake Austin from Warrington to put additional question marks against Gale’s future at Headingley.

“With Jake Connor at fullback, that suits me as a player and the strength we have in other areas across the pitch will complement me hugely,” he said.

“It’s a perfect fit for me. I can’t wait to meet the lads and crack on with pre-season training.”

Gale’s ability as an on-field leader has been a major draw for Hull FC coach Brett Hodgson.

He said: “Luke is a really high-quality addition for us and his arrival will be significant in changing the dynamic of our team as we continue to evolve and shape our squad for 2022.

“He is a proven international player, a natural leader and a competitor, who will have a strong influence on our attack and how we want to play, which will really complement Jake [Connor] and Josh [Reynolds] in our spine.

“I have been really impressed by his attitude and desire to make a real impression at the club and he shares the same beliefs and drive we have as a club, he is hungry for success.”

He continued, “It has been a really exciting few weeks for the club and our recruitment shows the direction we’re looking to take as a team and a club.

“The impact Luke will bring not only adds immediate strength to our squad, but also provides our younger halves with priceless education to help them continue their development and benefit the club for the long term future.”