‘He’s a hero’ - Halifax Panthers head coach pays tribute to Leeds Rhinos legend Rob Burrow

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Halifax Panthers’ head coach Liam Finn has described Rob Burrow as a “hero” after the Leeds Rhinos legend passed away last weekend.

The Headingley club announced on Sunday that Burrow had passed away peacefully at Pinderfields Hospital after being diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease (MND) in December 2019.

Praising Burrow’s on-field talents, as well as his brave battle off the pitch, Finn said:

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“He’s a hero, the way he put himself out there with that cruel disease. You imagine the instinct is to hide away and deal with it in private but he saw that he could make a difference with his profile.

Halifax Panthers’ head coach Liam Finn has described Rob Burrow as a “hero” after the Leeds Rhinos legend passed away last weekend.Halifax Panthers’ head coach Liam Finn has described Rob Burrow as a “hero” after the Leeds Rhinos legend passed away last weekend.
Halifax Panthers’ head coach Liam Finn has described Rob Burrow as a “hero” after the Leeds Rhinos legend passed away last weekend.

“To do that while going through the most horrendous ordeal shows the character of the bloke. You can’t underestimate what he has done for people. It is absolutely unbelievable.

“And that’s not even talking about his rugby career. He was an unbelievable rugby player as well. I played against him a few times. I played in his testimonial for Featherstone. We were a Championship team and we were alright and they absolutely tore us to shreds, him and all his mates just ripped straight through the middle of us. We just weren’t on the same level.

“He has done that in the biggest games we have got in this country. I can’t speak highly enough about him. I didn’t really know him that well, I only played against him, but I admired him from afar and respected him for his talent and, obviously, massively respected him for what he has done over the last four and a half years.”

Praising the rugby league community, Finn added:

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“The major strength of rugby league is when times are hard everybody gets together. What needs to be put into perspective is that we are not a massive sport. It’s a lot of the same people digging in their pockets over and over again.

“It shows what we are as a sport and that the patrons of the game, the players, coaches, supporters, everyone pulls together. These last four and a half years have epitomised what rugby league is all about.”

Finn’s Fax side, after coming close to pulling off a famous comeback against Toulouse last weekend, have a weekend off as Wakefield Trinity and Sheffield Eagles face each other in the 1895 Cup final on Saturday (kick off 5.45pm) at Wembley, straight after the prestigious Challenge Cup final between Wigan Warriors and Warrington Wolves (kick off 3pm).

And the RFL have confirmed that there will be plans to honour Burrow at the three-game event, which also sees the women’s Challenge Cup final kick off at 11.45am.

In all three games there will be a minute’s applause in the seventh minute - Burrow, who won the Challenge Cup twice with Leeds at the national stadium, famously wore the club’s number 7 shirt.

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