Burgess’ Bath bow delayed

England's Sam BurgessBath new boy Sam Burgess will have to wait to make his debut after suffering a fractured cheekbone in his final game for South Sydney Rabbitohs (Bath 9/2 – Aviva Premiership Grand Final Winner).

Burgess has made the decision to switch codes to union and Bath had hoped he would be available for their LV=Cup campaign in November.

However, Burgess suffered the injury in the opening seconds of the Rabbitoh’s 30-6 NRL Grand Final victory over Canterbury Bulldogs, but played on regardless and became the first non-Australian to win the Clive Churchill medal for being man of the match.

It has now been confirmed that the 25-year-old will have surgery on his cheekbone on Tuesday and he faces around six weeks on the sidelines as a result.

Burgess has signed a three-year deal with Aviva Premiership side Bath and had been expected to battle for a place in England’s 2015 World Cup squad.

It remains to be seen whether the spell on the sidelines will impact on his chances of forcing his way into Stuart Lancaster’s squad for next year’s tournament.

Burgess, who left Bradford Bulls for the NRL in 2010, played at prop for South Sydney but it is thought he will be used as a centre by Bath.

England are 13/8 to win the 2015 Six Nations and 3/1 to secure the World Cup title next year.

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