leigh Leopards announce 2024 season captain

Leigh Leopards are delighted to confirm that John Asiata will again wear the captain’s armband as he leads the club into the 2024 Betfred Super League season.

The popular 30-year-old led the Leopards to Challenge Cup glory in 2023 and fifth place in Super League. He joined four teammates at the end of season Super League Dream Team awards.

Head coach Adrian Lam said: “Last season John was voted captain by the players, and he’s excelled in the role, not only leading by example with countless stand-out performances on the pitch but being a great role model off it.

“There wasn’t a single reason to consider changing captain, so we haven’t and I’m looking forward to John captaining the team with the help of a very strong leadership group as we look to build on last season’s success.”

John Asiata said: “This means a lot to me. Obviously last year, being appointed captain, it was a great honour to lead the side into Super League on the back of the rebranding. I was very grateful to be handed the captaincy. It’s something you dream about as a kid growing up.

“I’m now excited for the next chapter at Leigh Leopards. It’s one to keep an eye out for. I think we are going to do some great things this year.

“We have a great bunch of boys who all have a purpose and a goal with what they want to achieve personally and as a team.

“I’m fortunate to have the backing of a great leadership group behind me. They make my job a lot easier. There are a lot of guys with great experience in the NRL and Super League who know how to win things.

“All the players are looking really sharp, and fitness wise we are way ahead of last year. We had a great year last year but now we are aiming for higher standards and higher goals.”

Since joining from Brisbane Broncos in 2022 Asiata, a former Samoa and Tonga international, has proved to be one of the best and most popular overseas recruits in the club’s history.

He enjoyed a fine debut season in England when Joe Mellor and Adam Sidlow were joint captains in the record-breaking three trophies season of 2022. Asiata was outstanding throughout as Leigh lifted the AB Sundecks 1895 Cup, the Championship League Leaders’ Shield and then confirmed their hard won return to Super League with a grand final victory over Batley Bulldogs.

Last season Asiata passed the notable milestone of 200 career appearances, 138 of them for North Queensland Cowboys and Brisbane Broncos in the NRL.

Already an NRL grand final winner with the Cowboys, after their 17-16 golden point victory over the Broncos in 2015, Asiata achieved a notable double when he led the Leopards to Challenge Cup success. By an amazing coincidence the scoreline was the same and Lachlan Lam’s winning drop goal, just like Johnathan Thurston’s for the Cowboys, also came in extra time.

John Asiata is proudly sponsored by Leigh Cables

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