Set for surgery in the coming days, Sam Burgess last night won the Clive Churchill Medal last night after helping Souths win their first NRL Premiership in 43 years.
Hailed as one the bravest acts in recent league history, Burgess played on for the full 80 minutes after breaking his cheekbone on the very first hit up of the grand final.
On the first tackle of the game, Burgess slammed into a Bulldogs defender, suffering a head clash and breaking his cheekbone.
Burgess immediately signaled to the trainer, and during the post match he confirmed the injury.
It was an emotional night for Sam Burgess, who’s much talked about departure from league has been a big talking point in the buildup to the final. With just over a minute to go, and the title in the bag, Burgess was down on his knees crying emotionally and could be seen speaking, most probably thanking and praying to his father who passed away several years ago, and the man Burgess says had a major affect on his career.
After Greg Inglis’s final try, the Rabbitohs allowed Burgess to kick the final goal, and the brit just narrowly missed the conversion before being hoisted high into the air by his teammates.
Burgess should be hailed for his accomplishments, leaving his greatest feat until the biggest game of his career and steering the South Sydney Rabbitohs to their first NRL title in over 43 years, a streak which lasted longer than the lives of every player in the organisation. Burgess was a part of one of the most heart warming victories in NRL history, and it is the perfect way to sign off his league career.
Wether Burgess does well in union remains to be seen, but his legacy in rugby league has been signed, sealed, and delivered.