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Development Coach Ryan Hinchcliffe has praised a group of hardened players returning from a brutal two days at the club's annual pre-season camp.

Describing the camp as a rite of passage for the club's first year players, the former Storm utility admitted the gruelling regime was "hard to watch".

"As coaches we observe it all but it's quite hard watching it to be honest," he said.

"They probably won't see it now but in hindsight they will realise they have taken a lot out of it.

"They have minimal sleep and they are put under an immense amount of pressure while they are fairly sleep deprived.

"I'm really proud of the group – it's fairly brutal what they are put through and they have handled themselves really well."

Hinchcliffe – who recently returned to the club in a coaching capacity after a three-year stint in the UK Super League – said Head Coach Craig Bellamy had championed the camp for more than a decade.

"Since Craig has been at the club nearly every player that has played first grade has been on that camp – it's a rite of passage," he said.

"Under that scrutiny you can probably see (the players') true colours – it might take you six months to see that in a normal training environment.

"It is very worthwhile and I know Craig gets a lot out of it."

Mid-season recruit and former Penrith Panther Tom Eisenhuth was named Man of the Camp.

"He was a deserved winner, he was very consistent the whole time," Hinchcliffe said.

"He spoke up a lot and led the whole group really well.

"He has had an interrupted season with injury and I'm confident if he can get on the paddock and train he could play a role for us this year."

After three seasons as a leader in the Huddersfield Giants forward pack, Hinchcliffe announced his retirement in September.

"I had a great three years but I thought the time was right for me to hang up the boots – I'm getting a little old and frail," he said with a laugh.

The premiership player said he was settling in to his new role and looking forward to his first season as a coach.

"I've only been into it for six weeks and sitting on the other side of the fence is very different," he said.

"I have a great group of coaches around me who are really helping me out.

"Who better to do my apprenticeship under than Craig? His record speaks for itself.

"My role is Development Coach but in pre-season (the coaches) work as a collective and that has been really good because I'm getting to see all aspects of the game.

"I am really enjoying being back in a professional environment where everyone works really hard."

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.