Bath confirm signing of Sam Burgess
February 17, 2014
Sam Burgess will be given the chance to fulfil a long time dream of playing in the Rugby World Cup © PA Photos
Bath have confirmed the signing of rugby league star Sam Burgess from Australian side South Sydney Rabbitohs, ending a fortnight of speculation over the possible move. He will be available to play for Bath once the 2014 season is over in the autumn.
Last Friday it seemed the switch had hit the buffers but the three-year contract was agreed after discussions between Burgess, 23, and the club.
Burgess said he was excited about the move. "With 2015 being a Rugby World Cup [year], it was an opportunity I had to pursue and I thank the Rabbitohs for allowing me to make this move and start the next chapter in my sporting career.
"I'm happy this has all been sorted out before the start of the season so that I can concentrate on my game and the team without any other things in the way. An opportunity presented itself to head back home to England and to pursue a chance to represent my country in two different sports."
Mike Ford, Bath's head coach and a former league player, said he had "no doubt" Burgess would "fit in seamlessly here at Bath and we're looking forward to having him join us and start making the transition".
Australian media reports said the Rabbitohs negotiated a financial settlement believed to be worth about Aus$900,000 (£485,000) as well as a clause in the contract giving them "first and last offer" on Burgess' services should he return to the NRL.
Burgess joined the Rabbitohs from Super League club Bradford in 2010, becoming one of the best players in the league.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
Real Madrid will take a slender advantage to the Allianz Arena next Tuesday after Karim Benzema's strike secured a 1-0 victory against Bayern Munich in the Champions League semi-final first leg
Blaise Matuidi scored a minute from time to put Paris Saint-Germain on the brink of the French title as they beat Evian 1-0
Liverpool are set to submit plans to expand Anfield this summer - and hope to start work in early 2015
Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker believes Mesut Ozil needs to be more consistent in the Premier League, but has backed the club's record signing to come good next season
The appointment of Paul Farbrace as England's assistant coach has been confirmed by the ECB
There were only 15 tries scored across the six games in Round 10, but the one I have picked says so much about a wonderful player, Brett McKay writes
We take you inside the book that made the now departed manager a laughing stock with his Manchester United players and try to work out where it all went wrong
Liverpool are within touching distance of winning their first league title in 24 years and they have the opportunity to put further distance between themselves and Chelsea
F1 photographer Mark Sutton picks his six favourite shots from the Chinese Grand Prix
David Moyes might have thought the lengthy list of unwanted records he accrued before his brief, turbulent reign at Manchester United was mercifully brought to an end would follow suit, but they keep on coming
Manchester United have finally lost patience with David Moyes and sacked the Scot, the club have confirmed
Gary Neville has branded Manchester United's handling of David Moyes' managerial situation as "repulsive" after the club failed to address rumours about his sacking before they confirmed his departure on Tuesday morning
Manchester United sacked David Moyes because they became convinced they were getting worse the longer they spent under his management, sources told ESPN
Anderson has given David Moyes a further headache by suggesting there are a number of unhappy Manchester United players who wish to follow him out of Old Trafford
Manchester United have already made the first steps towards bringing Louis van Gaal in to replace sacked manager David Moyes, Old Trafford sources have told ESPN
With one of the most prized seats in football now vacant, who will Manchester United turn to?
The patience has finally run out at Old Trafford with David Moyes' sacking as Manchester United manager now imminent - these are the blows which may have sealed his early fate
ESPN's Steve Bunce gives the lowdown on Alex Leapai, a "ham-fisted Samoan slugger" who now faces heavyweight boxing's toughest opponent, Wladimir Klitschko
The negatives may far outweigh the positives at Manchester United under David Moyes, but here we give you 10 things he has got right so far as manager at Old Trafford
Five men could be the possible replacement for David Moyes as Manchester United manager, writes Miguel Delaney