Rob Burrow: Leeds Rhinos star 'honoured' by new mural

Image source, Leeds City Council
Image caption,
The mural is being painted on the side of Leeds Beckett University's Student Union

An ex-rugby league star with motor neurone disease (MND) has said he is "absolutely honoured" after work began on a mural of him in Leeds.

Rob Burrow, who made 493 appearances for Leeds Rhinos, was diagnosed with MND in 2019.

The mural, on the side of Leeds Beckett University's Student Union, is set to be completed later this week.

Burrow, 38, said: "I am absolutely honoured by this. The city has been so kind to me. Best city in world."

Media caption,
BBC Breakfast has followed Rob Burrow and his family since he was diagnosed with motor neurone disease

During his career Burrow won eight Grand Finals, three World Club Challenges and two Challenge Cups, as well as 15 caps for England.

He retired in 2017, and two years later was diagnosed with MND, a degenerative condition that affects how nerves in the brain and spinal cord function.

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Leeds City Council leader Judith Blake said: "The strength and courage which Rob has and continues to show has been incredibly moving and truly inspirational to so many people.

"This mural in the city centre is therefore a fitting tribute to him as a person and also marks the tremendous career that he enjoyed at the Rhinos."

The 11.5ft (3.5m) tall mural is being painted by street artist "Akse" and was commissioned in a collaboration between Leeds City Council, Leeds Rhinos and the BBC, and will be featured in the BBC's Sports Personality of the Year on 20 December.

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