Storm squad assembles
Melbourne Storms preparations for the 2014 season continued on Tuesday with the full first-grade squad back in training, apart from the clubs World Cup representatives.
Storm Coach Craig Bellamy spoke to the media prior to the training session on Goschs Paddock giving an update on how the squad is tracking a month into pre-season.
We had a good break, Bellamy said.
We had some of the younger players and some of our new players come back a bit earlier.
Basically we have got everyone back now, Ryan Hoffman started yesterday and everyone except the guys who played in the World Cup are here now.
Storm's World Cup representatives will return to training in staggered starts over the coming months after competing in the eight-week tournament hosted in England and Wales.
Cameron Smith, Billy Slater and Cooper Cronk all played critical roles for the Kangaroos in their World Cup triumph while New Zealand International Jesse Bromwich started for the Kiwis in the Final. Junior Moors (Samoa), Mahe Fonua (Tonga) and Sisa Waqa (Fiji) also participated in the tournament.
Bellamy is hoping the rest for the clubs World Cup players will leave them revitalised and ready for the 2014 season after a long 2013 campaign.
Its another big season coming up so we will give them a rest now and hopefully they will be refreshed when they start, Bellamy said.
I think all of us here at club land are worried about the workload of our elite players.
Storms Kangaroos trio of Smith, Slater and Cronk played 99 games between them throughout 2013 in a year where the workload of the games representative players was stretched more than ever.
My opinion like a lot of other people Id imagine is that the World Cup was probably too long, Bellamy said.
Especially after the season these players have had. Especially the elite players that play Origin, they play at their clubs and their clubs play semi-finals then they go and play eight weeks at a World Cup.
We wont have our guys back until late January and thats not much time to get ready for next year.
Were not the only ones; most clubs are in that situation as well. It [the World Cup] is a prestigious event but in future they might look at shortening it a bit.