RUGBY: Burgess enjoys Commonwealth Games experience

RUGBY: Burgess enjoys Commonwealth Games experience

RUGBY: Burgess enjoys Commonwealth Games experience

First published in Sport by , Sports Reporter

PHIL Burgess said it was great to score a last minute try to win the Commonwealth Plate in Glasgow – even if it was not the main prize England wanted.

The former Cornish Pirates flanker went over in the dying seconds of the match against Wales on Sunday to give the national rugby 7s team a 17-15 win and bring home the plate, effectively finishing fifth overall.

England had to settle for the plate after losing to Samoa in the quarter finals at Ibrox 15-14 after finishing second in Group D.

Sides who make it out of the groups but not past the quarter finals are traditionally entered into separate contest run alongside the medal matches.

Burgess, pictured right, said: “Going over to score that try in the final play of the game to set up the win was a fantastic experience, along with the whole build up and life at the Games.

“Obviously it would have been better if it was the gold medal or the bronze medal game, which is the target we really wanted to reach.

“But from a personal point of view, it was good to get a score like that at a crucial time and keep the crowd entertained.”

Looking back at the competition, the 26-year-old, who played at Mennaye Field for four seasons before becoming a centrally contracted player for England 7s, said the team were bitterly disappointed to go out in the quarter finals by just one point.

But he added he would absolutely love to return to another multi-sport event with the side in the future, whether it be the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast City or for the sport’s Olympic debut at Rio in two years.

“It can come down to fine margins in 7s, which is what cost us in Glasgow,” he said.

“Losing our captain and key playmaker Tom Mitchell on the first day to injury was a big blow as he is an important player and having one man less puts extra strain on the other squad members.

“Overall though I enjoyed being at the Games. The crowds at Ibrox were superb. We warmed up across the road from the stadium and then when we entered the field it really hit you how good the crowd was. It reminded me of Twickenham.

“The next chance I’ll get to play in a multi-sport event is a long way away, but if I ever get the chance again I would love to do it again.”

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