Controversial Irish bookmakers Paddy Power have had some fun at the expense of their besieged rugby union counterparts with a cheeky billboard poster featuring Sam Burgess.
The two codes went head-to-head in football-mad Manchester this morning when the English Super League grand final was played at Old Trafford while just a few kilometres away England played the last pool match of its Rugby World Cup campaign, taking on lowly Uruguay at Etihad Stadium.
The league code could claim a rare victory with a record crowd of 73,512 fans cramming into Manchester United's iconic ground to watch the Leeds Rhinos, including 37-year-old Auckland prop Kylie Leuleuai playing his last game, win the grand final 22-20 over the Wigan Warriors while there were rumours ahead of the World Cup match that tickets for the match at the 60,000-capacity Manchester City stadium were selling for as little as less than $NZ6.
But it was a mobile billboard outside Old Trafford and featuring former NRL league star turned English rugby convert Burgess which caught the eye.
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It featured a picture of Burgess in English rugby gear but with his thumb hooked like a hitch-hiker and holding a sign photoshopped in reading: "Old Trafford".
Alongside it it read: "I'm a rugby league player. Get me out of here!'".