Leigh Leopards consider astonishing move for three-time NRL-winning forward

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josie andrews
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Leigh Leopards consider astonishing move for three-time NRL-winning forward

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Super League's newest club are looking to bolster their squad before the start of the season.

Leigh Leopards are contemplating an audacious move for New Zealand's powerhouse international Jared Waerea-Hargreaves. Rugby League Live understands the newly-promoted Super League club has held internal discussions over the prop, a three-time NRL champion with Sydney Roosters.

Waerea-Hargreaves, 33, is off-contract with the Roosters at the end of the season but Leigh are looking for an addition in time for their Super League return, with a pack arrival their current priority. The departure of Blake Ferguson has opened up a salary cap spot, which they are keen to use on a forward, ideally in the coming weeks.

Leigh are thought to have made some tentative enquiries about his potential availability, though it's unclear how feasible it would be to land a deal. Waerea-Hargreaves earns a reported $700,000 (£396,000) and there has been no indication publicly that the Roosters need to clear salary cap space. He remains contracted for the current season.

That said, Catalans Dragons, a club with close connections to the Roosters, are also reported to have considered a deal several months back, suggesting there could be a potential interest from the Roosters' side to do business.

It is unclear whether the forward is interested in a move to Super League himself. When asked about a potential move to the competition by Rugby League Live last year, he cast doubt over any future arrival. "Ah, I don't know bro," he said. "I'm 34 nearly. We'll see. I f*****g love being here. The passion from the supporters and I really like the style of footy over here as well."

If Leigh were to further act and land a deal, it would go down as an incredible coup for Adrian Lam's newly-promoted side. Waerea-Hargreaves has made 33 appearances for New Zealand and won the NRL three times with the Roosters in 2013, 2018 and 2019. He also started in the Roosters' three subsequent World Club Challenge victories.

Leigh, who are also thought to be considering options, have overseen a recruitment drive that has seen the likes of Zak Hardaker and Ricky Leutele join the club for their return to the top flight. They start their campaign against Salford Red Devils on February 17th.



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Anyone can support a team when it is winning, that takes no courage.
But to stand behind a team, to defend a team when it is down and really needs you,
that takes a lot of courage. #18thMan
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