Sam Burgess has stepped down as South Sydney Rabbitohs assistant coach while police investigate allegations made against him.
A four-month investigation by The Australian has reportedly uncovered pharmaceutical records, sworn statements to NSW Police, statutory declarations, witness accounts, call logs, emails, text messages, bank records, WhatsApp exchanges and Uber receipts detailing Burgess’s alleged episodes of drug use, domestic violence and abusive behaviour.
The 31-year-old’s lawyer denied the claims in a statement to the newspaper. He said: “The allegations are false and constitute an indefensible defamation against my client.”
“It is apparent sources of the false allegations are those currently in dispute with my client over various issues.”
The article in question accuses him of of testing positive for the drugs MDMA and Ketamine, while also suggesting that he assaulted his heavily pregnant wife in 2018.
One of the sport’s biggest names, Burgess retired from playing last year.
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The worst England XV of all-time
Fullback: Mark Van Gisbergen
Yes, he has a cap – only a fleeting one, as a late replacement for Mark Cueto against Australia in 2005 – but he does boast a 100% winning ratio in international colours, so you can’t knock that. His main strengths were dropping the high ball under limited pressure and getting gassed on the outside.
Winger: Barrie-Jon Mather
He became the first player to represent Great Britain in Rugby League and England in Union. His move to union was part funded by the RFU, who were embarking on a strategy of converting some of leagues best talent. However, Mather struggled to make an impact with Sale and moved back to Castleford in 2000. In spite of his poor form with Sale, Clive Woodward gave Mather his debut against Wales in the famous Grand Slam decider in 1999. However, Mather never played for England again after Wales won the game 32-31, following Scott Gibbs’ superb try.
Centre: Joel Tomkins
Tomkins began his League career with Wigan in 2005 and outside of a short stint with the Widnes Vikings in 2007, played with the Warriors until moving to Saracens in 2011. While Tomkins initially struggled to adapt to union, but his form during the beginning of the 2013/14 season saw him earn an England cap against Australia in November 2013. Although he went on to make two further international appearances, he looked completely out of his depth and returned to league soon after.