The world of Rugby League.

rleague.com

Sam Burgess backs brother after RLWC loss

Sam Burgess has defended younger brother George for his role in England's last-gasp defeat by New Zealand in their Rugby League World Cup semi-final at Wembley.
Sam Burgess backs brother after RLWC loss
by AAP

By Ian Laybourn

LONDON, Nov 24 PA - Sam Burgess has defended younger brother George for his role in England's last-gasp defeat by New Zealand in their Rugby League World Cup semi-final at Wembley.

England were leading 18-14 lead going into the final minute of Saturday's semi when George was penalised for a high tackle on Sonny Bill Williams.

Shaun Johnson evaded an attempted tackle by England captain Kevin Sinfield and wrong-footed George Burgess to score a try with 21 seconds left to level the scores.

Johnson added the goal to seal a 20-18 victory.

A distraught George Burgess declined interviews after the match but Sam was happy to stick up for his brother.

"George is a strong kid - he'll be fine," he said. "It was one penalty.

"There are going to be people wanting to point fingers but it's a full team effort. There were 17 men involved in this game and it was not won and lost in the last 20 seconds.

"There are so many situations and events that happen in the game that have an impact on the result. There'd be a thousand different things out there that if you could change, the result would be different, but that's sport and that's why it's so entertaining for the fans."

Burgess' strong 80-minute performance, capped by scoring England's third try after 66 minutes which restored their lead, earned him man of the match and glowing praise from former captain Jamie Peacock, who described it as the best by an England player in 20 years.

"The result probably takes over that one," Burgess said. "I draw a lot of inspiration from JP - I remember making my debut alongside him - and I appreciate his comments but I'd much rather swap the victory for any personal accolades.

"Sometimes you probably don't get out what you deserve and I feel tonight is one of those days."

Burgess, thought to be the likely successor when Sinfield steps down as captain, has backed coach Steve McNamara who is considering his future after his Rugby Football League contract ended with England's World Cup exit.

"Steve is great," said the South Sydney forward. "I've had him all through my career since being about 17 so he's a great man.

"Steve will make his own decisions so we'll have to wait and see but he's been fantastic throughout this tournament."


Your thoughts?


You need to login or register to contribute here



Follow rleague.com on Facebook

Related Profiles

View profile pages including statistics, results, news, photos and more on all of the following...
FootyPlayers
Sam Burgess
FootyTeams
England

Popular News Stories