17th June 2020, 09:32 | nrl
Former England captain Sam Burgess has been providing advice for brother Tom about taking on more of a leadership role at South Sydney.
With Sam and Rabbitohs stalwart John Sutton having retired, Tom is one of the senior members of the Souths pack and the Test prop said ahead of Friday’s round six NRL clash with the New Zealand Warriors that he wanted to step up as a leader.
“It is just something that happens naturally I think,” Burgess said. “You probably get more minutes and as a result it goes from there.
“I have got a lot of great people around me that are helping, none less than my brother. I can speak to him about what he used to do, as well.”
Tom said he spoke with Sam on a regular basis about how to improve aspects of his game.
“The biggest message he tells me is to do the simple things really well,” Tom said. “Do those things right and the rest will come. Don’t try to say too much but sort of lead by your actions.
“Moving forward you can add to that with your talk but I think at the start you have just got to go out there and do your job, and that is how you earn respect.”
Burgess turned in his best performance of the season against Melbourne last weekend, while fellow English front-rower Ryan Sutton made his return for Canberra in the Raiders defeat of Wests Tigers.
It was Sutton’s first NRL match with childhood friend and former Wigan team-mate George Williams and the pair have been named to line-up with countrymen Elliott Whitehead and Josh Hodgson against Manly on Sunday.
“It’s been three years so it is good to play with him again,” Sutton said of Williams. “He is a talent and I missed playing with him.
“Probably not a lot of people over here have seen what he has done but in these first few games he has really opened their eye up and he is only going to get better and better as the year goes on.”
The round features the most anticipated match of the season so far when the unbeaten Parramatta Eels take on premiers Sydney Roosters, who have scored 101 points in their last two outings against Brisbane and Canterbury.
The 42-6 defeat of the Bulldogs featured a masterclass from the player regarded as the NRL’s best, James Tedesco, who is benefitting from increased speed of the game with the new six-again again rule.
Round 6 commences with Brisbane, featuring English rookie Herbie Farnworth on the wing and former England rugby union international Ben Te’o on the bench, travelling to Newcastle on Thursday.
The high-flying Penrith Panthers will be aiming to bounce back from their first loss of the season to Parramatta last week when they take on the Storm, who are equal second with Canberra, at Bankwest Stadium on Friday.
The Justin Holbrook-coached Gold Coast Titans host James Graham’s St George Illawarra Dragons on Saturday before a crowd of up to 2,000 fans at Suncorp Stadium as COVID-19 restrictions ease in Queensland, with both teams chasing their second win of the season.
Wests Tigers, coached by former Wigan mentor, Michael Maguire, and North Queensland Cowboys will also be desperate for a win after back-to-back losses when they clash on Sunday.
The Raiders play the Sea Eagles on Sunday in what should be another good match between two of the NRL’s form teams.
The round will conclude with Sunday’s clash between Cronulla Sharks and Canterbury Bulldogs, who are waiting for former St Helens prop Luke Thompson to complete his mandatory 14-day quarantine at a Sydney hotel after arriving in Australia earlier this week.
Round Six Fixtures - All Live on Sky Sports Arena:
10:50am - Newcastle v Brisbane Broncos
09:00am - South Sydney Rabbitohs v New Zealand Warriors
10:55am - Penrith Panthers v Melbourne Storm
06:00am - Gold Coast Titans v St George-Illawarra Dragons
08:30am - Wests Tigers v North Queensland
10:35am - Sydney Roosters v Parramatta Eels
07:05am - Canberra Raiders v Manley Sea Eagles
09:30am - Cronulla Sharks v Canterbury Bulldogs