NRL: England international Sam Burgess handed two-match ban for "squirrel-grip" tackle
Last Updated: August 13, 2013 11:23am
Sam Burgess: Pleaded guilty to a "squirrel-grip" tackle during the Rabbitohs' defeat to the Storm
England international Sam Burgess has been slapped with a two-match ban after pleading guilty to a "squirrel-grip" tackle.
The South Sydney Rabbitohs forward will miss his side's next two games after opting not to contest the charge of contrary conduct stemming from an incident with Melbourne Storm centre Will Chambers last weekend.
The 24-year-old appeared to place his hands between the legs of the Storm centre, leaving him writhing on the ground in agony.
The original one-match ban was doubled because of loading from four previous offences in the last two seasons but Souths team-mate Roy Asotasi, who is joining Warrington in 2014, has dismissed accusations that Burgess is a 'grubby' player.
"A lot of people out there are saying that Sam's a grub," Asotasi said. "It's not what Sammy is as a person. He goes out and plays hard and sometimes things happen.
"I knew something had happened at the time but didn't really pay attention to it. But then I saw it and thought 'he could be in a bit of trouble here'."
Burgess' absence comes at a bad time for Rabbitohs coach Michael Maguire, whose side are battling to keep their spot in the top two of the NRL after three defeats in four games.
Burgess was on the end of a "squirrel-grip" tackle early in his career when, in July 2007, St Helens stand-off Leon Pryce was given a three-match ban for squeezing his testicles in a Challenge Cup semi-final against Bradford.