Melbourne Storm has bounced back, defeating the Canberra Raiders 28-14 at AAMI Park on Saturday night.
The home side were first to strike when Kevin Proctor picked up a loose ball and crossed the line in the resulting confusion just inside four minutes of play.
While Canberra were able to put their first try on the board through Sami Saluma on the left wing, Melbourne looked difficult to stop with tries to Jordan McLean and Marika Koroibete—the latter’s first try with the club.
Despite Storm taking a swift lead and looking for heavy impact on the scoreboard, the contest slowed to an arm wrestle with each side straining to gain ground.
Scores remained at 14-4 until a penalty in the final ten minutes of the half gave Anthony Milford the chance to score for the Raiders, reeling the margin back to within four points.
The match continued in similar fashion after the break with both sides struggling to gain a real advantage, despite the Storm spending the better part of ten minutes in their own half.
Neither side managed to capitalise until Mahe Fonua beat two defenders and ran through a third to take Melbourne to a 20-10 lead, with the help of a Cameron Smith conversion.
Any headaches for the visitors worsened when Fijian winger Sisa Waqa outpaced his opponent on the wing to score, followed soon after by an impressive combination between Koroibete and Fonua that stretched the lead out to 28-10.
Jarrod Croker caused a turnover in the dying minutes and ran the length of the field to score for Canberra, but it proved to be too little too late in an encounter fought on Melbourne’s terms.
Melbourne Storm 28
Tries: Mahe Fonua 2, Kevin Proctor, Jordan McLean, Marika Koroibete, Sisa Waqa
Goals: Cameron Smith 2
Canberra Raiders 14
Tries: Sami Sauiluma, Anthony Milford, Jarrod Croker
Goals: Jarrod Croker