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Dublin: 5 °C Tuesday 10 December, 2019

'Everyone has put two and two together' - Mike Ford dismisses Burgess speculation

Mike Ford says Burgess is going nowhere.

Burgess was made a scapegoat for England's World Cup failures.
Burgess was made a scapegoat for England's World Cup failures.
Image: Andrew Matthews

BATH HEAD COACH Mike Ford has dismissed speculation that Sam Burgess is on the verge of a move back to rugby league.

The former NRL winner with the South Sydney Rabbitohs became a scapegoat for England’s dismal World Cup campaign as the crashed out in the pool stage, and in recent days it’s been rumoured he’s considering cutting short his career in rugby union after just 12 months.

However, speaking to BBC Radio, his Bath coach Mike Ford has dismissed the speculation, saying the player is fully committed to both the club and the English national side.

“There’s no drama here, everyone has put two and two together,” Ford told BBC Radio 4.

“I’ve spoken to Sam many times and we’ve spoken about coming back to Bath, rolling his sleeves up and playing six for us.

“Everything we have spoken about has been about his future and playing well for Bath and potentially getting him to play for England in the Six Nations, if not at the end of the season on tour to Australia.”

Despite Ford’s stance, speculation is rife that the player is considering returning to rugby league, with several Australian news outlets reporting that he’s in talks with former club South Sydney Rabbitohs about re-joining.

Burgess played his first game of union last November before being capped by England for the first time in August.

However, there has been much debate about where the 26-year-old fits in best, with England choosing him in the centre for the World Cup, despite his Bath coach Ford preferring him in the backrow.

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Neil Treacy

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