Former Leeds Rhinos and England captain Kevin Sinfield has hailed the “unbelievable” show of support for Rob Burrow, whose benefit game on Sunday will be attended by a sell-out crowd.
The legendary scrum-half, who won eight Super League titles during his Leeds Rhinos career, was recently diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease.
But the sport of rugby league gets the opportunity to come together in support of Burrow on Sunday when Leeds host Bradford Bulls at Emerald Headingley, and the match – initially scheduled as a testimonial for Burrow’s former teammate Jamie Jones-Buchanan – will be attended by a sold-out attendance of over 20,000.
“What Rob’s facing is going to be one hell of a challenge but I think what’s pretty clear is that he’s not going to do it alone, there’s going to be an army of rugby league fans alongside him every step of the way. And on behalf of the club, and on behalf of Rob and his family, I can only thank them for that because they’ve made a real difference to him,” Sinfield, now Director of Rugby for the Rhinos, told The Sportsman.
“And that isn’t financial – I know the financial response has been unbelievable – but the messages of support he’s had, the messages we’ve all had, from people of all clubs from the game, from administrators, coaches, players, supporters, from people outside the sport as well, it has been just unbelievable.”
Burrow, 37, retired from rugby league after winning the 2017 Grand Final with Leeds, but it was announced in December 2019 that he had been diagnosed with MND, which currently has no cure.
Yet the 5ft 4in former England half-back, who will don the Leeds shirt for one final run-out in Sunday’s fixture, has shown a fantastic attitude to his predicament, drawing special praise from Sinfield.
“That’s who he is. I think he’s faced some difficult times before, probably none so difficult as what he’s facing now. But he’s always fronted up. He’s…