Melbourne Storm have opened their 2015 season with a 12-4 victory over St. George Illawarra in Kogarah.
In what proved to be an arm wrestle for most of the evening, Craig Bellamy’s side assured performance in defence ensured the two premiership points would safely come back to Melbourne.
Young Tonumaipea opened the evening’s scoring early on after latching onto the end of a clever Cooper Cronk kick over the Dragons defence and into space.
Off the back of the try, the Dragons asked plenty of questions of the Melbourne defence, who stood up time and time again during the opening half of play. Defending five sets inside their own 20 meter line, Storm managed to head into the main break with their six point lead intact.
The hosts finally capitalised on their field position just after the resumption of play when first-grade debutant Eto Nabuli was the beneficiary of a Benji Marshall grubber kick.
Holding a narrow two-point advantage after Gareth Widdop’s missed conversion, Melbourne came up with a much needed try on the hour mark to give the visitor’s some slight breathing space.
Jesse Bromwich’s offload kept ball alive in attack allowing Will Chambers to duck through the Dragons defence and score.
Controlling a better piece of field position for much of the second half of play, Craig Bellamy’s side were able to keep the Dragons at bay for the remainder of the contest and record their first win of the 2015 season.
Melbourne Storm 12
Tries: Young Tonumaipea, Will Chambers
Goals: Cameron Smith 2
St. George Illawarra Dragons 4
Tries: Eto Nabuli