Melbourne Storm v North Queensland Cowboys – the key match-ups

It is a far cry from the pre-season predictions that had the Storm missing the finals altogether. Linnett is a great defender, but those skills will be put to the ultimate test on Saturday night with the Storm’s right side attacking raids around Cronk, Proctor and Chambers sure to test his decision making. No. But has it provided the drive to get this far?


In his pre-game press conference on Friday, Storm skipper Cameron Smith rated Koroibete a 50/50 chance of playing.

“In most people, and particularly sportsmen, there is a lot of pride about what we do”, Smith told reporters.

“I don’t think it’s rife, from my experience, but having said that we are down here and a bit isolated from the rest of the NRL world”, Bellamy said.

Their last three outings have seen them record wins over the other teams still left standing in the playoffs, including a 14-6 triumph against North Queensland in round 25 of the regular season.

The game that night was played out in rain-soaked conditions but if the weather man is doing his job it looks to be clear conditions across the weekend.

The only time he was a spectator was in 2010 after the NRL forced Melbourne to play the season without being able to earn premiership points as part of a penalty for serious salary cap breaches in previous years. With no AFL games in the city this weekend – both preliminary finals were scheduled for Perth – Smith said he was thrilled the match would be the hottest ticket in town.

“The club administration and the NRL have done a great job in promoting the game”.

“The club has come a long way and this is the first time we have a full this stadium for a non-Warriors game”, Ponissi said. Not only is he big and strong, but his footwork before the line and ability to offload through it really make him the complete package and probably the prototype front-rower for the years to come.


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