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A logical storyline to come out of the Round 1 NRL Double Header is whether or not the next phase of NRL expansion should include a team in Perth.

This weekend is likely to see more than 30,000 fans flock to the newly built Perth Stadium to see the Warriors take on the Rabbitohs before the Storm and Bulldogs lock horns to kick off the 2018 season.

Melbourne will be playing their fifth game out west since 2009, with the average crowd over that time reaching nearly 13,000.

That figure will stack up with the numbers generated along the eastern seaboard during the 2018 season.

“I do not know what the administration are thinking in terms of expansion, but I think it will only be a positive for our game,” Storm captain Cameron Smith said.

“I’ve been involved in at least half a dozen games over here in Western Australia now and every time I’ve played out here we’ve had great crowds, a great following and the community gets behind the match.

“I think the thirst for rugby league is healthy – whether (a Perth team) is where the game is ready to move to I’m not too sure.”

Storm begin their 2018 season this Saturday night against the Bulldogs. Kick-off will be at 9pm (Melbourne time).

Acknowledgement of Country

Melbourne Storm respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.