'Sam Burgess' decision to quit union is a kick in the teeth for team mates' - George Ford
Fly-half George Ford has described Sam Burgess' decision to quit rugby union as a "bit of a kick in the teeth" for his Bath and England team-mates.
Ford has also admitted he felt hurt at being dropped by England for the World Cup defeat to Wales which effectively sealed the host nation's World Cup exit.
England head coach Stuart Lancaster was heavily criticised for picking Burgess and has since left his post following his team's failure to get past the group stage.
Ford has revealed he felt let down by Burgess who quit to return to rugby league with South Sydney Rabbitohs, having been one of the Bath players who had tried to help him integrate into rugby union.
He told The Guardian: "The boys here, the staff, the fans... they've committed so much that, to be honest, it was a bit of a kick in the teeth. We felt let down.
"I'm big on loyalty and respect. If you commit to something, to me you give it your all.
"There's a lot of people helping you out and making sacrifices to make you a better player and part of a great team. I'd never feel like I could walk away from that because I'd let a lot of people down.
"People make decisions for their own reasons - everyone's different - but I couldn't do that."
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Ford did not make the starting line-up for the 28-25 defeat to Wales and that upset the 22-year-old.
He said about being dropped: "It will always be something that will drive me because it hurt. It really hurt.
"I was disappointed, there's no two ways about it. I didn't agree with it. I said to the coaches as well.
"When you get dropped and you don't necessarily agree with it you want to go out and prove people wrong even more."