Leigh Leopards Overseas Player Departures and Recruitment Challenges 2024

Leigh Leopards Face Roster Woes as Overseas Players Depart

On the heels of a tumultuous offseason, the Leigh Leopards have faced further setbacks in their roster rebuilding efforts. The club has confirmed the departures of three overseas players at the end of the 2024 season, with John Asiata heading to Hull FC, Tom Amone joining the Canterbury Bulldogs, and Kai O’Donnell signing with the North Queensland Cowboys. Additionally, the Leopards have been unable to retain the services of Ricky Leutele, one of the biggest names in Super League, who will not be offered a new contract.

The Leopards’ overseas player exodus continues, as they now look to fill four out of their seven quota spots. The departure of Ben Nakubuwai is expected to be offset by the arrival of released Melbourne Storm forward Aaron Pene in the coming weeks. However, the club’s hopes of securing another key NRL signing have been dashed, as loose forward Jack de Belin appears set to join the South Sydney Rabbitohs.

“I need to cash in and make the most of my playing career,” said de Belin, acknowledging the opportunity to join the Rabbitohs.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the South Sydney Rabbitohs have emerged as the frontrunners to secure de Belin’s services, dealing another blow to the Leopards’ recruitment efforts. This news comes on the heels of the Leopards’ failure to land the signature of David Armstrong, the young full-back from the Newcastle Knights, who appears poised to sign a contract extension with his current club.

As the Leigh Leopards navigate the challenges of the offseason, they will need to strategically utilize their remaining quota spots to rebuild a competitive squad for the upcoming seasons. The departure of several key overseas players and the inability to secure high-profile NRL targets have presented the club with a significant roster puzzle to solve.

🔗 Source