Speed the focus at Nines

Storm will focus on a fast-paced, high-octane style when the Auckland Nines tournament kicks off this Saturday.

The Club has named several new recruits as well as established NRL stars for the showpiece event.

There is plenty of excitement around Storm’s 19-man squad and Nines coach Jason Ryles expects the selected players to be well suited to the up-tempo format.  

“There are a lot of open spaces, obviously only having nine on the field. Speed is certainly one of the things that comes into play,” Ryles said.

“Josh Addo-Carr, Young Tonumaipea, Curtis Scott, those guys are a big asset to your team.

“The bigger guys certainly help as well to get you forward and give those guys a platform to play off as well.”

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The playing group will resume their pre-season preparations in Melbourne early this week after completing a two-week training camp in Geelong.

With Round 1 only five weeks away and trial matches fast approaching, it is a busy time of year given the added need to prepare for the Nines tournament as well.

“It is one of those things where you have to try and fit it into your actual training plan,” Ryles said.

“You try and do a bit of Nines game simulation and it is good for fitness as well so we kill two birds with one stone.

“There is not a lot of time to prepare but in saying that a lot of our conditioning-type games certainly suit the Nines format.”

Storm will play their first game at the Auckland Nines this Saturday at 12.15pm against the Brisbane Broncos.