Sam Burgess: England star at code crossroads - brother Tom

Brothers George, Sam and Tom Burgess
Brothers George, Sam and Tom Burgess played in the Rabbitohs' 2014 NRL Grand Final victory

Bath's Sam Burgess is "at a bit of a crossroads" over his rugby union career, his brother Tom has admitted.

The rugby league convert is considering a return to Australia's NRL after World Cup hosts England's dismal campaign.

Burgess's brother Tom plays with Sam's former side South Sydney Rabbitohs, who are believed to be close to re-signing the player.

Sam Burgess at crossroads, says brother Tom

"He's probably a bit fatigued mentally as well as physically," Tom Burgess told BBC Sport.

"He's at a bit of a crossroads at the moment, he's had a lot on. He went straight from an NRL Grand Final to a Bath season, and then into a World Cup with England.

"He probably just needs a bit of a break. It's his decision at the end of the day, he can't please everyone.

"Speaking truthfully, he was probably treated a bit unfairly in my opinion and that's probably what's pushing him away at the moment.

"He's not made any decision as yet, at the moment he's still with Bath."

Burgess, 26, was controversially picked as a centre for England during the World Cup after switching codes in 2014.

Sam Burgess
Bath coach Mike Ford expects Burgess to be back in training on Monday after giving him time off because the player "didn't feel quite right"

His Bath head coach Mike Ford described the World Cup as a "cocoon" which had "caught up" with Burgess, but insisted he was "very" confident he would see out his three-year contract.

Following Bath's 38-28 defeat by Harlequins on Saturday, Ford was asked again if he was 100% sure Burgess would remain with Bath, and replied: "Yes, what more do you want me to say?"

However, Burgess's representatives have been in talks with the Rabbitohs about a return to league and the NRL executive Shane Richardson - who helped sign Burgess for South Sydney from Bradford Bulls six years ago - is in England this week.

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He was a guest at the first Test between England and New Zealand at Hull on Sunday.

Retired dual-code Wales international Jonathan Davies, commentating on the game, said Burgess had been "hung out to dry" and described the criticism of him as "pathetic".

Davies said: "I would like him to show the union people what he can do, but I think the way it's been handled he'll be going back to rugby league. And league will then be a lot better off for that.

"Union people wanted me to fail because it's a bigger story. I feel it's been the same for Sam, it's a shame it hasn't changed in nearly 20 years."

Listen to dual-code international Iestyn Harris's view on how Burgess has been made a "scapegoat" in rugby union, on BBC Radio 5 live.

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