Over the course of nearly two and half seasons Marika Koroibete has built himself from a reserve grade player into fan favourite.
The Club’s leading try scorer last season, the Fijian has become a key figure in the Storm attack since he began to call Melbourne home from the middle of 2014.
In that time Koroibete has endeared himself into purple hearts and the feeling is certainly mutual as he revealed last week.
Media reports suggested the winger has attracted interest from rugby union.
With Melbourne already in negotiations to re-sign Koroibete, Storm coach Craig Bellamy said he could understand if there was outside interest in a player who was beloved by the purple faithful.
“He is obviously a class player so a lot of clubs would like to have him,” Bellamy said.
“We’d really like to hang on to him obviously, he’s been a wonderful contributor to our team since he’s been here.
“You’d probably nearly class him as one of the crowd favourites here the way he plays and the way he performs, he just does everything flat out all of the time. We are certainly very keen to hang on to him.
Rugby union clubs expressing interest in NRL talent is nothing new, yet Bellamy believes it is an issue to consider for those at NRL HQ.
“It is probably going to happen more and more so we probably just need to be more aware that if it is okay to lure union players over here, we don’t want to lose our players over there either,” Bellamy said.
“So that might be something for the NRL to think about as well.
“As a code we wouldn’t like to lose Marika either, I think that would be a bad thing for our game losing a player like him.”
“We can understand why union would want him, we can understand why any club would want him but hopefully we can keep him.”
Storm take on the Warriors this Monday night in their traditional ANZAC Day blockbuster. Kick-off from 7pm.