Competition - NRL Premiership
Round - Round 02
Teams – Melbourne Storm v Gold Coast Titans
Date –    13th of March 2016
Venue – AAMI Park, Melbourne VIC
Photographer – Brett Crockford
Description –

Match Preview - Round 9

Melbourne Storm v Gold Coast Titans
Sunday May 1, 2pm
Cbus Super Stadium

For the second time in seven weeks these two teams will meet again in 2016.
Their Round 2 clash at AAMI Park resulted in a 34-16 Storm win, although the eventual score line was hardly a true reflection of what was a genuine contest.
The game on Sunday will also mark Craig Bellamy 350th as coach while Tim Glasby plays his 50th NRL game.
Storm will head up to the Gold Coast looking for their third straight win and are undefeated so far this season after backing up from Monday night games.
They face a Titans team who are certainly unlucky to be on a four game losing-streak they currently find themselves in.
The boys from the coast have lost all four games by single digit margins, three of them against sides currently in the top six of the NRL ladder.
Neil Henry has stuck with the same side that lost to the Bulldogs in golden-point last week, while Lachlan Burr has been included in an 18-man squad. Young halfback Ash Taylor has not been named after being a late omission last week against Canterbury due to a rib injury.
Melbourne have also named the same side that won 42-0 against the Warriors on ANZAC Day with the addition of Felise Kaufusi to the team.
 

Key Matchups:

Dale Finucane v Greg Bird
Finucane got the better of this head-to-head match up back in Round 2 when he scored his only try of the season to date. The Storm lock has been in stellar form in 2016 and is surely in Laurie Daley’s considerations for Origin selection. Bird has been in strong form of his own and will be out to prove a point on Sunday after missing out on Australian selection during the week. Added to his motivation would be his return from a one-week suspension that saw his miss last week’s loss to the Dragons.

Jesse Bromwich v Dave Shillington
The last couple of weeks have proven why Bromwich is arguably the NRL’s premiere big man. The Kiwi prop has 25 offloads for the season, three more than any other player in the NRL and in the last two games has averaged 182 metres. Standing in his way this week will be Dave Shillington, a fierce competitor with a never-say-die attitude. Games are often won up the middle and these two men will play a big part in deciding that come Sunday.
 

Milestones: Craig Bellamy 350th game & Tim Glasby 50th NRL game
 

History: Played 15; Storm 10, Titans 5. Melbourne have won four of the past five meetings but on the Gold Coast the two teams have split the ledger at three a-piece.
 

What we’ve said:

“It is nice to get to a milestone but I’m doing the easy bit, sitting up in the box watching” – Craig Bellamy

“We’ve had a few setbacks but at the end of the day you can’t sit around feeling sorry for yourself, you’ve got to get on with it and that’s what they’ve done” – Craig Bellamy

“We were probably a little bit guilty of trying too hard I think. That is probably why (our attack) took a few weeks to come together but it was always going to happen” – Blake Green

“If someone had of said to me when I was back at Rockhampton I would play 50 games for Melbourne Storm I would have laughed at them” – Tim Glasby
 

What they’ve said:

“We competed for large parts of the game down in Melbourne and we are certainly keen to get two points” – Neil Henry

“Ash at the moment is in a little bit of doubt because he hasn’t had much training at all because he is still inconvenienced by that rib injury” – Neil Henry

 

Match Officials: Referee – Grant Atkins; Assistant – Chris James; Touch Judges – Adam Reid & Belinda Sleeman; Review Officials – Bryan Norrie & Jared Maxwell; Senior Review Official – Luke Patten.
 

Broadcast: TV – Fox Sports 1, Radio – ABC Grandstand & 2GB, Online – NRL Digital Pass.
 

Squads:

Melbourne Storm

Gold Coast

1. Cameron Munster

1. William Zillman

2. Suliasi Vunivalu

2. Anthony Don

3. Richard Kennar

3. Josh Hoffman

4. Young Tonumaipea

4. Nene Macdonald

5. Marika Koroibete

5. David Mead

6. Blake Green

6. Tyrone Roberts

7. Cooper Cronk

7. Cameron Cullen

8. Jesse Bromwich

8. David Shillington

9. Cameron Smith ©

9. Nathan Friend (c)

10. Jordan McLean

10. Ryan James

11. Kevin Proctor

11. Zeb Taia

12. Tohu Harris

12. Chris McQueen

13. Dale Finucane

13. Greg Bird

 

 

Bench

Bench

14. Kenny Bromwich

14. Luke Douglas

15. Tim Glasby

15. Leivaha Pulu

16. Felise Kaufusi

16. Agnatius Paasi

17. Nelson Asofa- Solomona

17. Kierran Moseley

18. Ben Hampton

18. Lachlan Burr