Retired NRL star Sam Burgess couldn’t hide his emotions when he discussed his failed marriage to ex-wife Phoebe during a bombshell interrogation on SAS Australia.
During Monday night’s launch episode, the former South Sydney Rabbitohs player, 32, confessed that he had previously been unfaithful to Phoebe, also 32, adding that he knew he had “embarrassed” her during their four-year marriage.
“I don’t think I was the best husband sometimes,” he told the camera. “I embarrassed my wife. I had an affair with a girl, a woman in Melbourne. That’s true.
Breaking his silence: Retired NRL star Sam Burgess couldn’t hide his emotions as he discussed his failed marriage to ex-wife Phoebe during a bombshell interrogation on SAS Australia
“I was on tour and unfortunately that happened. What would’ve been… it would’ve been a tough place for Phoebe to be.”
In 2018, Sam was embroiled in a sexting scandal involving a Melbourne woman who claimed he cheated on his wife the year before.
In the immediate aftermath of the scandal in September 2018, Phoebe, who was then pregnant with her second child, withdrew from a public appearance but publicly supported her husband in the weeks that followed.
However, the couple ended their marriage shortly after Christmas of the same year, three months after he was cleared of any involvement in an NRL ‘sexting’ affair.
Confession: During Monday night’s launch episode, the former South Sydney Rabbitohs player, 32, admitted to having previously been unfaithful to Phoebe, 32, saying he ’embarrassed her’ during their four-year marriage
Despite a brief reconciliation in early 2019, the couple broke up for good in October of the same year.
The news of the divorce came just days after Sam — who shares daughter Poppy, four, and Billy, two, with Phoebe — announced his retirement from all sports leagues with immediate effect on October 30, 2019 due to a shoulder injury.
Sam said he “couldn’t accept” his surgeon’s decision, so he tried to go back and play.
“I was on tour and unfortunately that happened. What would have been… would have been a tough place for Phoebe to be,” he said
“It was a bit of a knife to the heart,” he explained in Monday’s episode. ‘I couldn’t accept it. I knew I couldn’t do my job in two games, so I stopped. It was c*t.’
Chief Instructor Ant Middleton then asked if Sam had then gone on a ‘path of destruction’ after his marriage and the end of his career, to which he replied, ‘I didn’t know how to go about it.
‘I’m not very good at managing emotions. Anything to do with my team, myself, the press – I don’t mind.
“When it got emotional with losing my kids, not seeing my kids every day, breaking up my marriage and that put pressure on my ex-wife… I didn’t like that.
Another loss: The divorce came two days after Sam announced his retirement from all sports leagues with immediate effect on October 30 due to a shoulder injury.
Response: Chief Instructor Ant Middleton then asked if Sam had gone on a ‘path of destruction’ after his marriage and the end of his career, to which he replied: ‘I didn’t know how to manage it’
“I hated that I hurt other people I couldn’t handle.”
He continued: ‘I started drinking and taking drugs – I thought I could handle that. Then it was pulled [up on a] DUI with drugs in my system, which again was all over the press, so I couldn’t see my kids anymore. I just signed up for rehab.’
In May of this year, Sam avoided conviction despite pleading guilty to three driver’s licenses after a February 22 traffic stop where he tested positive for cocaine.
It came two months after Sam’s conviction for intimidating his ex-wife Phoebe’s father Mitchell Hooke in the wake of the couple’s messy breakup was overturned by a judge.
Children: Sam and Phoebe share two children; Poppy, four, and son Billy, two
Sam later said that visiting a four-week rehabilitation center “saved his life” and revealed that he had completely stopped drinking in an attempt to change his path for the better.
After the interrogation, Sam concluded by saying he hoped his time on SAS Australia would help him “look a little deeper into myself.”
“I have this theory of life that it’s peaks and valleys, ups and downs. Sometimes you don’t know when the peaks are at the top and you don’t know how far the valley can go.
“Maybe this could be the start of my climb out of the valley.”
SAS Australia continues on Channel Seven on Tuesday at 7.30pm
Purpose: After the interrogation, Sam concluded by saying he hoped his time on SAS Australia would help him ‘look a little deeper inside myself’