Joe Wardle joins Leigh

Leigh Centurions have confirmed that Joe Wardle has become one of the first of the club’s new signings as it prepares for the 2022 Betfred Championship campaign.

Wardle, 30, is a vastly experienced and versatile top Super League player who has also represented Scotland and enjoyed one season in the NRL with Newcastle Knights. He has scored 76 tries in 217 career games.

Wardle signed for the Centurions after meeting head of rugby Chris Chester and looking around the facilities at Leigh Sports Village.

Speaking about his move from Huddersfield Giants, Wardle told LCTV that he is excited to be making the move.

“I needed a fresh challenge and after speaking to Chris (Chester) and knowing what a passionate owner the club has in Derek Beaumont, it was all very appealing,” he said.

“I have played here in the past and the backing Leigh Centurions get from the fans is amazing and I am looking forward to playing here. We need to prove that we are the best in the Championship and get back into Super League.”

Chester said: “I have known Joe a long time. He is a good person, good trainer and will bring quality to the squad. He is a leader and will, I am sure be a big asset both on the field and in the dressing room. He has plenty of experience both in Super League and the NRL who has bought into our vision at Leigh Centurions.”

After coming through the ranks at Bradford Bulls, Halifax-born Wardle made his top flight debut in 2010. He has spent the bulk of his playing career in two spells at Huddersfield Giants, latterly playing alongside his younger brother Jake.

In 2017 he played one season in the NRL with Newcastle Knights and returned to the UK to sign for Castleford Tigers before later rejoining the Giants. He played for Scotland in the 2013 World Cup and the European Cup the following year.