Round 22 - Key match-ups

Billy Slater v Kurt Gidley

Melbourne Storm fullback Billy Slater will this week line up against Newcastle Knights captain Kurt Gidley for his side’s tough clash on Saturday evening.

Both fierce competitors and both highly capable of dismantling opposition defences at will, the clash between these two fullbacks is shaping up as one of many match-ups to watch on Saturday night.

Meeting on numerous occasions at club level, the pair has also come up against each other at Origin level, as well as representing their country together.

For Slater, his influence this season on Storm has yet again been immense cementing his position as one of the premier fullbacks ever to play the code.

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Gidley has shifted his position under Wayne Bennett at the Knights this season, a testament to his ability to read the game and combative nature. However in recent weeks, he has found himself back in his original position and looking as dangerous as ever.

Jesse Bromwich v Kade Snowden

Star prop Jesse Bromwich will take on Kade Snowden head on in a key match-up which will help shape the end result for Saturday nights clash between Storm and the Knights.

Much of Melbourne Storm’s success this season has been through the hard work and unselfish play from prop Jesse Bromwich. The New Zealand International has this season made an impressive 527 tackles and 239 hit ups. Bromwich has become one of Storm’s most consistent performers each week.

Bromwich’s opposite number in Snowden will provide a tough test for Storm as the young prop has made 151 hit ups and always looks dangerous with ball in hand as he leads the line going forward.

Returning from a virus which sidelined him for Newcastle’s trip to Cairns last weekend, Snowden has been named to re-take his place in the front row on Saturday. Knights mentor Wayne Bennett will be looking to the 27-year old for plenty of output from the prop in the front-row alongside the experienced Willie Mason.

The views expressed in this article are solely of the author and do not reflect the views of Melbourne Storm Rugby League Club.