England pays tribute to Sam Burgess

Sam Burgess has been flooded with warm messages from England teammates after announcing his retirement from Rugby League, effective immediately.

Thomas Burgess, Elliott Whitehead, Jamie Peacock and James Graham all gave words about the impact Sam had on their careers, while sharing fond memories of him.

"Sam doesn't want us to feel sad for him. He wants us to celebrate the good times we've had together," brother, Thomas Burgess said.

Playing footy with Sam has been some of my fondest memories.

Thomas Burgess

Thomas alongside many of the current English forwards, also credit Sam as being the main reason for coming over to Australia, where he followed in his older brother's footsteps, to link up with the Rabbitohs.

Canberra Raider, Elliott Whitehead, also praised Sam for the legacy he's created in English Rugby League for many years.

He's an idol to so many of us in this team at the moment

Elliott Whitehead

"When I was thinking about coming over, Sam encouraged me. If it wasn't for him I probably wouldn't have," Whitehead said.

Former teammate and now a member of the England coaching staff, Jamie Peacock said the impact Sam has had on the game in general has been huge.

In my personal opinion, he's the best player I've ever played alongside.

Jamie Peacock

Long time friend, James Graham, said there was no busier person on a football field than Sam Burgess.

"The way he carried the ball, the amount of effort required to tackle him; he was never out of the game," Graham said.

Graham also shares a story on-field about Sam.

"I remember we were playing against the Kiwis and I hurt my knee. I remember Sam saying 'come on, we need you.' 

Because of his voice and presence and that he carries so much weight, he managed to drag me through it. He has that presence," Graham said.

He was somebody you just wanted to be alongside and play with

James Graham

Sam Burgess finished his career with 23 Tests for England and two Tests for the Britain Lions, while also captaining his country on two occasions.