RWC 2015 England vs Wales: Scott who? Oh yes - Sam Burgess taunts Wales opponent Williams ahead of Twickenham clash

Burgess' mischievous response to a question regarding his Welsh opponent on Saturday suggests the England centre has confidence in his abilities

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The Independent Online

When Sam Burgess was informed yesterday that Wales centre Scott Williams had said he was glad to be facing England's new boy rather than the injured Jonathan Joseph tomorrow, Burgess’s response was somewhat pointed.

“Who’s that?” Burgess asked rhetorically. “Oh yes. OK, yes,” he said of the 33-cap Scarlets inside centre.

It was a confident, mischievous response from the 26-year-old former Bradford Bulls and South Sydney Rabbitohs forward, who 10 months after his switch from rugby league will make his second Test start at Twickenham tomorrow.


It is fair to say Burgess is not concerned what others think of his speedy elevation from newcomer to starting in the biggest match of the England head coach Stuart Lancaster’s four-year stewardship.

“I don’t believe what people say. I believe in Stuart. I believe in what he’s picked,” Burgess added.

“It’s their opinion. I believe in myself. I feel I’ve got the respect of my team-mates and the staff here. That’s the opinions that really count to me.

“My job as a player is to go out and deliver the job that he’s given me. That’s my main focus. I’ll just let my performance do the talking. I don’t want to make any bold predictions but I’ll be ready.”

Burgess suggested the game was among the most important of his career, alongside the NRL grand final, his last match for the Rabbitohs, which he ended with a fractured cheekbone.

“This is up there. It’s a big game, really excited to be a part of it. I’ve never played against Wales. I’ve got none of the scars or bad experiences against them.”

Burgess will be in direct opposition to British & Irish Lions centre Jamie Roberts, who has vast experience on the international stage. “Jamie’s a great player, very big and dominant. Looking forward to the battle,” said Burgess, who no longer feels like a rookie and was stumped when the difference between league and union was posed.

“I’ve stopped thinking about that, because I feel like I’m a rugby player,” he said. “I’m more focused about what my job is within this team.”