Smith heroics snatch Storm win
Some Cameron Smith late heroics have seen Storm come from behind to beat the Rabbitohs 15-14 in front of an electric crowd at AAMI Park on Saturday night.
Trailing by two points with seconds remaining, Smith converted a 39-metre penalty kick to send it into golden point before finishing the job himself with a field goal that sent his side into top spot on the NRL ladder.
It was a gripping contest throughout the 80 minutes as both sides traded blows and momentum shifts.
South Sydney looked far from a side sitting in 14th place as they brought aggressiveness throughout the contest both with and without the football.
However a steadfast Storm maintained the belief until the dying moments to snatch the points.
The Rabbitohs had never won a game in Melbourne and did not do themselves any favours early with George Burgess dropping the ball on the game’s very first hit-up.
It was a stagnated start to the game with five penalties given inside the opening 10 minutes.
Storm thought they had broken the deadlock after 23 minutes when Cooper Cronk played an inside ball pass to send Kenny Bromwich clean through. However the home crowd’s cheers were short lived as officials ruled obstruction on the play.
A string of offloads in the 31st minute presented the Victorian side with another opportunity to take the lead only for Suliasi Vunivalu’s foot to drift into touch just before his grounding.
Despite the home side’s early efforts it was South Sydney who struck first, five minutes before the break.
It came via the boot of Adam Reynolds who’s chip kick found its way to a high-flying Alex Johnston to score his fourth try in three games against Melbourne.
The visitors very nearly nudged further ahead in the shadows of half-time, only to have a try of their own disallowed to obstruction.
Trailing 6-0 Melbourne needed to re-emerge out of the sheds with intent and they did just that, forcing a turnover inside Rabbitohs territory inside the first two minutes.
They backed up the defensive effort by scoring the very next set courtesy of a brilliant left-edge move that saw Munster find Marika Koroibete for his eighth try assist of the season.
Smith then sent the sideline conversion straight through the middle to level the scores.
With the monkey off the back the home side appeared to play with greater freedom as they forced the Bunnies into back-to-back goal line drop outs on their very next foray up-field.
As the purple pressure mounted it was the left edge that found its way through again as Blake Green found Cheyse Blair who came up with an aerobatic finish to put Storm into a 10-6 lead.
That would last all of five minutes though as the visitors would again capitalise from a Reynold’s high ball, with Angus Crichton the beneficiary to wrestle back a 12-10 lead.
Melbourne maintained their composure to draw level through a Smith penalty kick however Reynolds returned serve to restore the two-point with 10 minutes to play.
The Rabbitohs seemed destined for a famous win but with the clock winding down a dangerous throw on Cameron Munster handed Storm a last-gasp chance to level the scores.
It would require a 39-metre penalty kick by Smith and it was a task the Storm skipper took with ice through his veins to send it to golden point.
The future immortal was not finished there as he stepped up to nail a golden point field goal from dummy half, his second of the season, to seal a thrilling win.
Melbourne Storm 15
Tries: Marika Koroibete, Cheyse Blair
Goals: Cameron Smith 2
Field goal: Cameron Smith
South Sydney Rabbitohs 14
Tries: Alex Johnston, Angus Crichton
Goals: Adam Reynolds 3