Storm bounce back in the West
Melbourne has regained their spot on top of the NRL ladder with a strong 14-6 win over the Rabbitohs on Sunday night.
It was a tough test in every sense of the word and both teams stood tall in defence.
In the end it was Melbourne's lightning quick outside backs that proved the difference as Suliasi Vunivalu, Josh Addo-Carr and Will Chambers all got on the try sheet in the narrow win.
For Craig Bellamy’s men it had been a long eight days since that narrow loss to the Titans and they began the contest like a team with a point to prove.
Fast hands out to the right saw Billy Slater hit Will Chambers with a pass to put the in-form centre over for the opening try after just five minutes.
Cameron Smith added the sideline conversion and the Storm skipper showed his class again six minutes later when he produced his third 40-20 kick of the season.
Melbourne enjoyed all the early momentum but against the run of play South Sydney drew level through John Sutton on their first real foray up field.
Storm continued to press though and it would be Smith again steering the ship as he put in a perfectly weighted grubber kick behind the Rabbitohs line and into the path of Addo-Carr who made it 10-6 after 25 minutes.
That was the score at half-time and the first ten minutes after the restart was an arm wrestle as several errors crept into the game of both sides.
The Rabbitohs were dealt a blow in the 64th minute when playmaker Adam Reynolds was forced from the field for a HIA test and did not return.
It seemed a matter of time before the game’s defining moment arrived and that it did with six minutes to play.
Youngster Joe Stimson, who provided a terrific impact of the bench, found Suliasi Vunivalu on the left. The winger then turned on the speed and was simply too powerful for Cody Walker, climbing over the Rabbitohs fullback to score his ninth try of the season and seal the points for Melbourne.
Melbourne Storm 14
Tries: Will Chambers, Josh Addo-Carr, Suliasi Vunivalu
Goals: Cameron Smith
South Sydney Rabbitohs 6
Tries: Gerard Sutton
Goals: Adam Reynolds