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Exclusive: Ex-Leeds Rhinos forward reveals why he left the Super League club and Richard Agar influence in exit

In life and career, there are people that just don’t take a shining to others – and that’s completely fine.

In rugby league, that could be when one coach does not want a certain player at a club and would prefer to invest in someone else – that is just part of life.

But, sometimes that can hit people hard, and, for former Leeds Rhinos and current Bradford Bulls forward AJ Wallace, that is what happened at Headingley over a year ago.

Wallace, who is regarded as one of the best forwards outside of Super League in what has been a meteoric rise for the Jamaican international, left the Rhinos at the end of the 2021 season in order to gain first-team rugby.

That left the barnstorming back-rower to sign a one-year deal with the Bulls where former head coach John Kear gave Wallace a chance to impress as soon as he arrived.

That exit from Leeds was prompted by a decision by ex-head coach Richard Agar not to offer the forward a new deal.

“The head coach didn’t think there was room for me, he didn’t offer me a contract,” Wallace told Serious About Rugby League.

“He said that there were other people in front of me and that I wouldn’t get much of an opportunity which took me by surprise as I felt like I had impressed a lot of people.”

Wallace also revealed that his previous position as a prop didn’t help him as he wasn’t in the mould of player that Agar liked.

“It’s everyone’s opinion at the end of the day, some people want different things. Agar’s version of a prop was someone who was over six foot and that wasn’t me.

“I used to play prop and I was quite small in that regard but I’m in the back-row now.”

The starlet has been linked with a move to Super League for the past few months with a number of top flight clubs said to be circling the Jamaican international who will be playing at this year’s World Cup.

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