😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂— Carl fearns (@Carl_Fearns) November 5, 2015
As news of Sam Burgess's very much predicted departure from Rugby Union broke this afternoon, Twitter's reaction was markedly conflicted.
While some see it as a personal defeat for Burgess, many continue to spin the narrative that the entire sport of Rugby Union had somehow let him down. Unsurprisingly the 26-year-old received unanimous support from Rugby League supporters, to who seem see him as a modern day 'Prodigal Son'.
More interesting was the reaction of many big name Rugby Union pundits and players who have rowed in behind the 'Burgess Betrayed' line.
If @SamBurgess8 has gone back to league then it's fair to say @EnglandRugby should hold their hand up. What a waste, what a mess. GL pal.— Olly Barkley (@ollybarkley) November 5, 2015
If it's true about @SamBurgess8 then it's a sad day for the rugby world and a great one for @SSFCRABBITOHS— Sonny Bill Williams (@SonnyBWilliams) November 5, 2015
Am I hearing @SamBurgess8 has left Bath? If so rugby union has let the lad down..— Will Greenwood (@WillGreenwood) November 5, 2015
There were more even handed responses, with some suggesting the real victims where the players dropped to accommodate Burgess.
Sam Burgess- RU fans did not want him to fail; too many wanted him to succeed too early & poor selection. Good luck to a great player.— Brian Moore (@brianmoore666) November 5, 2015
Those shedding tears of sympathy for Sam Burgess should save them for @lutherburrell + @CarlFearns who are most affected by misguided gamble— Martin Gillingham (@MartGillingham) November 5, 2015
Sam Burgess gone with immediate effect... Could've been a top player with TIME - just needed TIME!— ugo monye (@ugomonye) November 5, 2015
So @SamBurgess8 has left Rugby Union. A sad end to a chapter that the England coaches handled so badly— Will Carling (@willcarling) November 5, 2015
Still hard to believe just how badly Burgess' union career has been handled. Catalogue of massive errors from coaches.— Paul Williams (@thepaulwilliams) November 5, 2015
Others saw the funny side of the debacle and pondered the many sponsorship deals that have gone south with Burgess.
Just popped a fiver on Burgess wearing 12 in England's 2019 Rugby World Cup opener. #LetsGoRoundAgain! What a massive shame all round.— Alex Payne (@SkySports_AlexP) November 5, 2015
Burgess quits #Bath Just imagine it was his intention all along regardless of the #RWC2015 Impossible to prove but a good conspiracy theory😂— Iain Balshaw (@iainbalshaw) November 5, 2015
While many are less than happy...
So #Burgess comes to union, is pretty average at best, steals a #RWC2015 spot & then bolts back to league w/ 2 years left on deal. Ok then.— Matt Tidcombe (@MattTidcombe) November 5, 2015
Huge Burgess fan and still am, but he's bottled this one. Unfairly treated, perhaps, but prove people wrong, don't quit #Disappointed— Jack Johnston (@JackJohnston89) November 5, 2015
Can't believe about Sam Burgess, never had him down as a quitter— Ed Hutson (@Ed_Hutson) November 5, 2015