Why Zak Hardaker is Leigh Leopards’ player with a point to prove and why he will shine in 2023

The best thing about sport is that it is an ongoing story. Its stars are the characters, the stadiums are the majestic settings that home fairytales and each season acts as a chapter in the most compelling on running drama series man has ever penned.

Every year it seems there are a million stories to light up Super League often driven by the stars of the game.

Whether it is a star player shining as bright as can be, a youngster making a name for himself, a new signing changing the complexion of the league or someone written off in the past who has a point to prove in the new season.

That’s what we’re considering today, those players with a point to prove in 2023 and we’re looking at Leigh Leopards.

As ever, the new faces at Leigh of course have something to prove at a new club.

As do the likes of Joe Mellor, Lachlan Lam and Ben Reynolds with plenty of competition at six and seven especially after the arrival of Gareth O’Brien from Castleford Tigers.

Even star Edwin Ipape will want to prove that all the hype is not for nothing.

But the player with the most interesting point to prove is Zak Hardaker.

Some have been critical of Zak Hardaker for turning down Leeds’ offer in favour of a move to Leigh after leaving Wigan Warriors in 2022 due to finding the travel difficult.

Hardaker was also vocal at being disappointed by the offer Leeds made for him at the end of 2022 after helping them to the Grand Final.

But Hardaker, still one of Super League’s best players and perhaps the league’s best defensive fullback, has a chance to prove all those who have been critical of him wrong.

A player who rises to the occasion and defies his critics, expect a big season from him and don’t be surprised to see him fire Leigh to the play-offs.

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