When Zak Hardaker left Leeds midway through 2016 just months after winning the treble and the Man of Steel with the Rhinos, no one expected to see him in a Leeds shirt ever again.
But as chance would have it, Hardaker is set to make his second Leeds debut today. The versatile outside back made his original debut for the club 11 years ago in a 30-16 defeat to St Helens in which he scored.
He’d love to get over the line again today but will hope for a better result as the Rhinos look to make it three wins on the spin against Salford as they strive to get their season back on track with new coach Rohan Smith taking charge of his first game today.
Hardaker’s Leeds return has been one hell of a story starting with the Rhinos hoping to bring him in on loan ahead of their game against Toulouse owing to a massive injury crisis and Hardaker falling out of favour at Wigan.
This loan deal never materialised as Wigan released him from his deal allowing Leeds to sign him on a contract until the end of the season.
Set to debut against Hull KR having signed on the Tuesday prior, a seizure denied him a Headingley debut but he now seems certain for a second Leeds debut today based on his excitement on Twitter this morning.
It was a simple tweet saying “Anddddd it’s game day” but suggests he’s set to play today and make his second Leeds debut just weeks after a seizure.
Anddddd it’s game day 😁
— Zak Hardaker (@zakhardaker1) May 15, 2022
The big question is will he start at fullback or at centre with Richie Myler also set to return to the side this afternoon.