3. Sam Burgess
“England were looking for a physical edge from the Yorkshireman and he made instant impact with thumping tackle on Dimitri Szarzewski. Yellow card marred an impressive debut. 7/10”
That’s how The Guardian described Sam Burgess’ England debut on 15 August 2015. By November 5 he was back in rugby league.
Not a downfall which was his own doing in the view of many. He was a blockbusting, versatile forward in league, touted as England’s answer to Sonny Bill Williams – a ball-handling and physical back.
At club level, he operated well as a back row but internationally we was slotted into the number 12 shirt.
Ultimately, that proved to be a sad a recipe for disaster. He moved back to his beloved South Sydney Rabbitohs, while he captained England Rugby League in the 2017 Rugby League World Cup Final before retiring as a result of a chronic shoulder injury last year.