Cas on the drift as Hardaker is left out of Grand Final squad
Full-back to miss showpiece after breaching club rules
Betfred Super League Grand Final
Sky Sports Action, 6pm Saturday
Castleford full-back Zak Hardaker has sensationally been left out of the Tigers' Betfred Super League Grand Final on Saturday due to a breach of club rules.
The England star was a shock omission from Daryl Powell's 19-man squad for Saturday's showpiece against Leeds at Old Trafford.
“The club will make no further comment at this point as full attention is focused on Saturday’s Grand Final,” said a Tigers statement.
Hardaker, who was pipped to the Man of Steel award by teammate Luke Gale, had been 7-1 second-favourite to win the Harry Sunderland Trophy for man of the match and an 11-1 shot to score the first try in Manchester.
Bookmakers reacted to the news of 25-year-old's absence by easing Castleford to 8-13 from 1-2 and reducing the handicap line from six points to four in favour of the Tigers.
Leeds have included second-rower Stevie Ward in their Grand Final squad even though he dislocated his shoulder in last Friday's 18-16 semi-final win over Hull.
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