Burgess to captain England in Four Nations

By Peter Thompson 17 October 2016
Burgess to captain England in Four Nations

Sam Burgess has been named as England captain for the upcoming Four Nations in the absence of the injured Sean O'Loughlin.

The forward was recalled for international duty for the tournament in his homeland, which starts on October 28, and it was confirmed on Monday that he will lead Wayne Bennett's side.

Burgess made 14 appearances for his country and two for Great Britain before he opted to switch codes in 2014.

The 27-year-old returned to rugby league for a second spell with NRL side South Sydney Rabbitohs last November and can now look forward to having the honour of skippering England - who start their campaign against New Zealand on October 29.

Burgess said: "It is an absolute honour and privilege to be asked to captain my country and to lead this group through the Four Nations tournament. I want to thank Wayne for having the trust and belief that I can do the job and I am determined to do my best for this team.  

"Although I am captain on the field for this tournament, there are a group of leaders in this squad and I know that we will work together and as hard as possible to try to achieve success on the pitch for England."

Bennett has backed Burgess to make a big impact as captain in the Australian's first tournament since replacing Steve McNamara as coach.

"I know the importance and pride that is placed on being captain of England. In Sam I believe we have got the right guy for the job whilst Sean is injured," Bennett said.

"He is a player and man who leads from the front and has the utmost respect from his team-mates and fellow professionals.

"I know how much it means to Sam to play for his country, he is a huge player across our sport and he knows how to inspire and get the best out of people. I am certain he will do a great job as England captain."

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Peter Thompson