Dragons braced for Burgess bounce back

TOUGH NIGHT: A dejected Sam Burgess after the Rabbitohs' one-point loss to Melbourne last week. Picture: AAP

TOUGH NIGHT: A dejected Sam Burgess after the Rabbitohs' one-point loss to Melbourne last week. Picture: AAP

SOUTH Sydney endured a heartbreaking start to the finals and Dragons forward Tariq Sims is expecting to feel the full brunt of that frustration when his side face the Rabbitohs on Saturday – particularly that of star lock Sam Burgess.

Burgess had a mixed night in his side's one-point defeat to Melbourne on Friday night, a match where he was clearly in the sights of the Storm pack.

The barnstorming Englishman ran for 176 metres and made 38 tackles, but missed six tackles and made four crucial errors in the painfully narrow defeat.

The Storm also kept Burgess brothers Tom and George to under 100 running metres well below their usual output on a tough night up front. 

In comparison, the recently maligned Dragons pack enjoyed an emphatic return to form against the Broncos.

It means they'll head into Saturday's clash high on confidence, but Sims said they'll need to find another gear against a fired-up Rabbitohs outfit.

“They’re proud Englishman and they’ve done a lot in the game,” Sims said of the Burgess brothers.

“Off the back of last week’s tough loss against Melbourne they’re definitely going to come out firing.

“All year the Rabbitohs have been setting a really nice platform for their outside backs and they’ve got a pretty handy centre out there in Greg Inglis and obviously Dan Gagai and [Alex] Johnston out the back there.

“It’s not only the Burgess boys, Damien Cook’s jumping out of that hooker role there and he’s fast as lightning so you’ve got to really be on your toes there.”