Menzies' arrival will give Bulls timely lift

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The Independent Online

Bradford have signed Steve Menzies for next season, but fear they will be without Sam Burgess for the rest of this campaign. The Australian Test forward will be 35 by the time he arrives at Odsal, but the Bulls coach, Steve McNamara, believes Menzies' veteran status is no barrier.

"He's an absolute legend of the game in Australia, a proven winner who, despite his age, is still playing week in, week out for the top side in the NRL," he said. Menzies, who has spent 16 years at Manly, sees himself in a mentoring role. "I'm looking forward to seeing some of the quality juniors at the club and I know that one of my roles will be to help them progress," he said.

Burgess is one whose progress, at the age of 19, has already been startling, but it could be interrupted by the shoulder injury on which he is having a second scan today, after the first proved inconclusive.

Bradford are expecting to hear that he needs surgery, which would rule him out for four months, including the World Cup this autumn. That would be a major blow to the England coach, Tony Smith, who could also be without stand-off Leon Pryce.

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