Sam Burgess faces a battle of Britain
Nick Walshaw From: The Daily Telegraph May 12, 2010 12:00AM
SAM Burgess outweighs his mate by 21kg. Stands six centimetres taller, too. Completely overshadowing a rival whose most notable feature he describes as skinny legs.
“But I’ve also defended alongside Mark Flanagan when we played together at Bradford,” the Rabbitohs prop grins. "So I’ve seen first hand what the bloke can do … "
Not since Braveheart have the odds of British bloodshed been so short.
It’s seemingly guaranteed this Sunday afternoon when 112kg enforcer Burgess takes on fellow Britons and Wests Tigers rivals Flanagan and Gareth Ellis at the SCG.
Forget all the hype of NRL Heritage Round. Of retro jerseys, Sydney rivalries and blockbuster matches beneath that historic clock tower.
This 80 minutes is all about three Poms tearing into one another with all the ferocity of an English Premier League riot.
“Is this a game I’ve been looking forward to? Well, I knew it was coming up, yeah,” Burgess told The Daily Telegraph yesterday before training at Redfern Oval.
"I mean, the three of us are all mates. I spoke to them quite a bit before moving over here and we’ve caught up a few times for a beer.
"Mark and I also played a bit of footy together back home. To be honest, I really see him as the perfect example of English guys who should be chasing a career in the NRL. Mark doesn’t have a big reputation but he works incredibly hard, is deceptively strong and can really hit in defence.
“I won’t be running straight at him I can tell you.”
Despite being only four months into his NRL career, Burgess says he now wants to play out his entire career in Australia - and is pushing for all three brothers Luke, Tom and George to join him.
“They all want to come out here and play, definitely,” Burgess reveals.
"My older brother Luke actually wants to get out here as soon as possible, so who knows?
"I’d love to have them all come out here because, personally, I’m signed four years but want to stay in the NRL for as long as possible. For as long as I’m playing good footy.
"Out here you’ve got a great competition, a great lifestyle.“s I’d love to see more English guys come here to test themselves.”