Rugby League World Cup: Sam Burgess not worried by Australia press criticism
Sam Burgess is taking little notice of criticism in Australia that he is a 'thug' ahead of Saturday's clash with Fiji.
Last Updated: 09/11/13 10:03am
The 24-year-old South Sydney Rabbitohs man missed England's 42-0 victory over Ireland last weekend after being suspended for one match following a high shot on Sam Thaiday in their loss to Australia.
The former Bradford Bulls star has come under fire from Down Under for the tackle in Cardiff, although he does not feel he should have missed any more than one match.
Burgess will return to Steve McNamara's squad against Fiji and even though it is not a must-win clash for the co-hosts, they will be looking to end their Group A clash on a high.
Pinch of salt
"I don't need to justify myself to the Australian press," Burgess said in the Daily Telegraph. "There are always going to be things written and people will have an opinion but I don't need to justify what I think of myself to them - I'll just get on with things.
"I've heard it all before. I think they wrote that me and James Graham were fighting, so I guess you must take what's written with a pinch of salt. It's funny what they come up with.
"I'm not bothered what they write. They write good things, they write bad things, but you've got to take the rough with the smooth. Like I said, it doesn't really affect me and it's part of the game over there.
"Rugby league is big over there and is written about a lot with a lot of newspaper coverage, so it's not a big deal. The (Sydney-based) Telegraph have got their own interpretation and I'm not going to sit here and defend myself. I don't think I need to do that just yet.
"I play the game 100% and occasionally things aren't going to go as I planned. I've got no regrets and I'm certainly not going to sit here and explain myself to the Australian press. The one-game ban was fair enough because it was an ugly tackle and probably warranted."