Bath must battle on without Burgess

Sam Burgess 18149158Bath (4/1 Aviva Premiership Regular Season Winner) head coach Mike Ford has confirmed that they will have to battle on without new signing Sam Burgess for at least another six weeks as he recovers from surgery on his face.

The 25-year-old England rugby league international was expected to start his career in rugby union shortly following the NRL Grand Final in Australia earlier this month.

However Burgess suffered a shattered cheekbone and eye socket during South Sydney Rabbitohs’ first final victory in 43 years as they defeated Canterbury Bulldogs 30-6.

He bravely played on during that game with the injury and was subsequently sent for surgery to repair the damage to his face which has now had an impact on his Bath career.

Speaking after his side lost 29-22 at Wasps in the Premiership on Sunday, which has left the side in fourth spot in the table after six matches – five points behind leaders and reigning champions Northampton (5/2 Grand Final Winner) – Ford said: “He’s had the operation and we’re now figuring out a time for him to come over.

“So it will be two to four weeks for his arrival, and yes probably six weeks roughly for a playing return.”

Burgess had hoped to get his cross-code switch underway as soon as possible as he looks to push for a spot in England’s Rugby World Cup squad for the tournament in 2015.

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