ZAK Hardaker’s new Super League club has been confirmed following his exit from the Leeds Rhinos.
His new club will be the Leigh Leopards, who rebranded this afternoon in a press conference led by owner and chairman Derek Beaumont.
🤩 Want to see two new signings for this upcoming 2023 @SuperLeague season?
— Leigh Leopards (@LeighLeopardsRL) October 20, 2022
Hardaker rejuvenated his career as well as Leeds when he made the move midway through the 2022 Super League season, helping the club to a Grand Final spot.
However, there had been issues with Leeds’ salary cap which explained the lack of a new deal, until Jack Walker’s departure to Bradford seemingly paved the way for a Hardaker deal.
That was not forthcoming and Leeds Rhinos chief Gary Hetherington had earlier said this on the future of Hardaker: “When Rohan arrived he inherited a salary cap that was full for 2022 and pretty full for 2023 as well, given the number of players already contracted for next year and so on,” Hetherington told the Yorkshire Evening Post.
“Some flexibility was created by people like Liam Sutcliffe – who was contracted for next year – moving on.
“That released some salary cap spend and with Zak, the intention was always to retain him, however we were spent up on the cap.
“Flexibility on the cap only became possible last week with the decision of Jack Walker to move to Bradford Bulls, because he was contracted for next year.
“That enabled us to have the capacity to make an offer to Zak for next year, which we did.
“We were hopeful of him staying, but since then he has had what appears to be a very lucrative offer from another club and he has decided to take that offer.”