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5 centres Leigh Leopards could sign after Zak Hardaker exit

Leigh Leopards

Following the confirmed move of Zak Hardaker to Hull FC for 2025, Leigh Leopards may be facing a crisis in the centre position.

At the moment, none of their recognised centres are contracted for next year, with Ricky Leutele and Keanan Brand only on deals until the end of the current campaign – while Ed Chamberlain is also on his way to Hull.

Hardaker’s move makes things even trickier, and they’ll need at least one Super League centre signing – maybe two.

With that in mind, here are some of their options.

Konrad Hurrell

Konrad Hurrell is wearing the St Helens shirt. Of course, it's white with a red V, and there's a thin red line down the sides. The collar and sleeve cuffs are red. The Home Bargains logo on it is huge. There's a Super League logo on the sleeve.

Credit: Imago Images

St Helens have an option to extend Hurrell’s contract through 2025.

However, if they don’t choose to trigger that option – which it seems they won’t – one of Super League’s biggest names would find himself out of a club.

Despite being almost 33, he’s still got plenty of life left in him as seen by 13 appearances in Super League this season.

His bold personality has split opinions among Super League fans, but his talent is unquestionable.

His excellent performances for Leeds Rhinos, following his move from Gold Coast Titans, earned him a move to perennial Super League champions St Helens, where he was a key member of the 2022 Grand Final-wining side.

He also appeared for Tonga’s national side between 2013 and 2022, while in 2016, he was named as part of the World All-Stars team for an NRL exhibition game.

This feels like the kind of move that would suit Leigh; they do seem to be going for a long-term approach by allowing academy players to develop and come through the ranks, but those players will need experience with them.

Matthieu Laguerre

Matthieu Laguerre in action for France against England.

Credit: Imago Images

The French international has struggled for game time this year, and only played a handful of games last season – spending some of it on loan to Toulouse Olympique.

He’s been behind Matt Ikuvalu and Arthur Romano in Steve McNamara’s side.

A key member of the side in 2022, when he scored eight tries in 13 Super League appearances – including three in one game against Castleford, we know he’s very capable of being a Super League starter.

In his time in Super League, he’s also shown that he’s capable of doing a job on the wing, and operated from that position against England at the delayed World Cup in 2022.

A move to Leigh could reignite his Super League career.

Kevin Naiqama

Kevin Naiqama anad Tom Amone Leigh Leopards

Credit: Imago Images

A definite Super League starter, he’s played every game for the Giants this year and has long been the first name on the teamsheet in Super League – whether it’s been with Huddersfield or St Helens.

He’s played over 100 games in both Super League and NRL, has played in four World Cups for Fiji and holds three Super League trophies and a Challenge Cup as well.

Off-contract next year as it stands, he’ll surely be a player Super League sides are looking at currently.

He may be 35, but just like Hurrell, he could present an option to bring real experience to a Leigh Leopards side that looks like it’ll have less and less of it next season.

Luis Roberts

Luis ROberts Leigh leopards

Luis Roberts. Credit: Mark Cosgrove/News Images

Leeds Rhinos outside-back Luis Roberts may be on his way out of the club ahead of the 2025 season, with Super League clubs interested.

He’s played fractionally more games on the wing than at centre throughout his career, and is adept in either position.

He’d only played on the wing this year until the last three games, where he’s been named at centre alongside Rhyse Martin, who looks set to head elsewhere for next year, or Harry Newman.

Roberts was signed by Leeds Rhinos from Leigh Leopards ahead of the 2023 season after time spent out on loan at Widnes Vikings.

Just 22, he’s a player that can improve a lot going forward as well.

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