Monday, 18 November, 2019

George Burgess banned for eye gouge

The incident that landed Burgess in hot water. Pic Fox SportsMore The incident that landed Burgess in hot water. Pic Fox SportsMore
Cary Erickson | 08 November, 2018, 23:59

George Burgess has defended his character after being handed a four-match ban that rules him out of South Sydney's opening three matches of the 2019 NRL season.

The England forward George Burgess will miss the final rugby league Test against New Zealand after being found guilty of eye-gouging.

The incident, which occurred 20 minutes from the end of England's 20-14 victory, went unpunished by referee Gerard Sutton.

England star George Burgess has issued an apology, via his twitter account, to anyone who "thinks bad of me" after he was banned for 4 matches for a Grade D behaviour contrary to the spirit of the game charge following an alleged 'eye gouging ' incident in the 2nd half of Sunday's worldwide against the Kiwis.

Shortly after the findings, the prop Tweeted that he would "accept my punishment" but would "never accept that I gauged [sic] a fellow player's eye intentionally". "I have too much respect for the players I play against and with".

However, the Rugby Football League announced on Monday that New Zealand cited the incident and they referred Burgess to a disciplinary hearing.

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Watene-Zelezniak confirmed the fingers of Burgess had dug into his eye but brushed it off in his post-match interviews.

"I'm sure he didn't do it on goal", New Zealand captain Watene-Zelezniak said.

"Lucky the doctor was there to give me something".

The 23-year-old Penrith fullback was unsure if Burgess' act was intentional. I don't think that's in their kit bag but it is what it is you just have to deal with it. I think his whole hand would probably cover my whole face. I'm sure it was accidental.

England have already won the series 2-0 having also beaten the Kiwis in Hull.