Castleford players Gale and Hardaker on Man of Steel shortlist

Man of Steel contenders Zak Hardaker, Albert Kelly and Luke Gale.
Man of Steel contenders Zak Hardaker, Albert Kelly and Luke Gale.

Betfred Super League leaders Castleford Tigers boast two nominees in the three-man shortlist for this year’s Steve Prescott Man of Steel award.

Chosen by a poll of every Betfred Super League player and presented to the individual deemed to have had the biggest impact on the season, Castleford’s Luke Gale and Zak Hardaker are joined by Hull FC stand-off Albert Kelly in the race to lift the most prestigious individual prize in the game.

Castleford scrum-half Gale has been in the best form of his career resulting in him scoring over 300 points so far for the Tigers and retaining his place in the England squad which saw him feature in the mid-season Test against Samoa in Sydney. Integral to Castleford’s pursuit of a place in the Grand Final, Gale’s statistics speak for themselves when it comes to getting players over the line, dominant field position and points on the board.

Joining Gale is team-mate and 2015 Man of Steel, Zak Hardaker. Originally signing with the Tigers on loan from Leeds Rhinos at the start of the season, Hardaker quickly slotted into Daryl Powell’s team, seamlessly linking up with Castleford’s attacking back line helping them score over 170 points in their opening four games. Now signed on a permanent deal, he has become one of the best full-backs in the competition; regaining his desire to score tries, in the top ten players for try assists and recalled back into the England squad.

After two seasons playing on the east side of the city for Hull Kingston Rovers, Albert Kelly swapped the red and white for the black and white of Hull FC in 2017 and has gone from strength to strength. A former Player of the Year at Rovers, Kelly kicked on this year and scooped four awards at a recent Hull FC Club Player of the Year awards making him a firm player and fans’ favourite. The current top try scorer at the club, Kelly has linked up well with fellow playmaker Marc Sneyd and guided the team to Ladbrokes Challenge Cup success for the second year running and the prospect of a top four position in the Betfred Super League Super 8s as they look to do an impressive double this year.

The Steve Prescott Man of Steel is chosen by a poll of every Betfred Super League player and results will be made public after the event hosted in Manchester on Tuesday October 3. The evening will also feature several other awards, including; Coach of the Year, Club of the Year, Foundation of the Year and Young Player of the Year.

Nominees for the 2017 Betfred Super League Young Player of the Year are St Helens duo Morgan Knowles and Regan Grace and Wigan Warriors centre Oliver Gildart. Players must be under 21 years of age at the start of the season to be considered for the Young Player of the Year award.

Tickets for this year’s Betfred Super League Grand Final at Old Trafford on Saturday, October 7 cost from just £20 for adult tickets and £15 for concessions. Please visit http://www.rugby-league.com/tickets/betfred_super_league_grand_final to purchase or for further information.