The Manly Warringah Sea Eagles have signed forward Luke Burgess for the 2015 and 2016 seasons today, after the South Sydney Rabbitohs agreed to grant him an early release from the final year of his contract.
Burgess, 27, has played 135 NRL and Super League matches since making his debut for the London Harlequins back in 2007. Burgess was an integral part of the South Sydney Rabbitohs squad who broke their 43-year premiership drought in 2014, playing 18 matches for the side.
The front-rower has also tasted success with the Leeds Rhinos in the English Super League, winning the title in 2009.
After a strong preseason at Redfern, the Englishman is looking forward to heading to the north to get acquainted with his new teammates.
“I’ve had a wonderful time at the South Sydney Rabbitohs and I’d like to thank them for the wonderful memories over the years,” Burgess said.
“I really appreciate them granting me this release. I’m really looking forward to the next few seasons at the Sea Eagles and can’t wait to get stuck in with the boys tomorrow,” Burgess added.
Sea Eagles Coach Geoff Toovey is looking forward Burgess hitting the ground running at his new Club.
“Luke is really coming into his prime as a front-rower and we’re pleased to have added more experience, power and depth to our forward pack with his late addition to the squad.”
“He’s an experienced footballer and comes with a winning mentality, so I’m sure he’ll fit right in to what we have got going here at the Club already.”
Sea Eagles CEO Joe Kelly was delighted the Club was able to gain a player of Luke’s quality so close to the start of the new NRL season.
“Luke signing with the Club is a fantastic result and I’d like to thank the South Sydney Rabbitohs for their willingness to grant him a release and join us here on the Northern Beaches.”
Burgess will join up with the rest of the Sea Eagles squad tomorrow morning for his first session in the maroon and white.