The ex-England captain Steve Bird is set to make a surprise return to the game after a decade away from the field, as he is to wear a jersey of his former England team-mate and one of his closest friends.
Bird’s shirt was retired at the end of the 2017 World Cup, but he was a key member of the England team that won the World Cup.
He played for the All Blacks, Australia and New Zealand, and captained the All Black squad in the 2006 World Cup finals.
Bird, a former rugby league player, retired from international rugby league at the age of 30.
“I’m delighted to be back in the game and to be playing with my old mates,” Bird said.
I’ve been away for a long while, so this is a big day for me. “
It’s been a long time since I’ve played a match.
I’ve been away for a long while, so this is a big day for me.
I’ll wear the jersey when I play for my old team again.”
Bird said he was honoured to have the opportunity to wear the shirt again.
“Steve is an England legend, I’ve worked with him many times and he is an amazing person and a legend,” Bird told the Telegraph.
“To wear the England jersey is a privilege and it’s a special moment for me.”