Melbourne had a surprise loss to the impressive Panthers last week but the Warriors are in a big hole, making the shock decision to sack coach Stephen Kearney despite winning two of four games since the NRL's resumption.
The move is a huge blow to a players already dealing with significant adversity and coming off an injury-hit loss to Souths in which almost nothing went right.
It's still smooth sailing at the 4-2 Storm, with both their losses coming against teams who had to play exceptionally well to beat them, though they may face further disruption if their home game has to be moved due to the recent COVID-19 outbreak in Victoria.
Match: Storm v Warriors
Round 7 -
Venue: Netstrata Jubilee Stadium, Sydney
Storm: Brenko Lee is out, with Paul Momirovski (No.21) to take his place in the centres. Lee and Nicho Hynes were the two players dropped from the squad 24 hours out from game time. Melbourne are boosted by the return of Josh Addo-Carr and Jahrome Hughes to the starting side, with Marion Seve and Ryley Jacks making way. Jacks and Max King were the last two players omitted an hour before kick-off. The Storm have won their past eight games against the Warriors.
Warriors: Several late changes to Todd Payten's side with Adam Blair moving from lock to prop and Jamayne Taunoa-Brown going to the bench. Isaiah Papali'i will start the game in the second row and Tohu Harris moves to lock. In the backline, Patrick Herbert moves to the wing and Gerard Beale to centre. Adam Pompey and Leivaha Pulu dropped out an hour before kick-off.
David Fusitu'a and Lachlan Burr are both out of the Warriors team, with Beale and Poasa Faamausili their replacements. Both Fusitu'a and Burr were in concussion protocol in the lead up to the match.
Payten indicated Chanel Harris-Tavita would rotate with Karl Lawton at hooker, while Ken Maumalo is set to play after overcoming a hamstring strain. The Warriors have not won at Kogarah since 2003.
Fullback for Storm is number 1 Ryan PapenhuyzenFullback for Warriors is number 1 Roger Tuivasa-Sheck
Winger for Storm is number 2 Suliasi VunivaluWinger for Warriors is number 4 Patrick Herbert
Centre for Storm is number 3 Justin OlamCentre for Warriors is number 3 Peta Hiku
Centre for Storm is number 21 Paul MomirovskiCentre for Warriors is number 18 Gerard Beale
Winger for Storm is number 5 Josh Addo-CarrWinger for Warriors is number 5 Ken Maumalo
Five-Eighth for Storm is number 6 Cameron MunsterFive-Eighth for Warriors is number 6 Kodi Nikorima
Halfback for Storm is number 7 Jahrome HughesHalfback for Warriors is number 7 Blake Green
Prop for Storm is number 8 Jesse BromwichProp for Warriors is number 13 Adam Blair
Hooker for Storm is number 9 Cameron SmithHooker for Warriors is number 9 Karl Lawton
Prop for Storm is number 10 Christian WelchProp for Warriors is number 15 Poasa Faamausili
2nd Row for Storm is number 11 Felise Kaufusi2nd Row for Warriors is number 11 Jack Murchie
2nd Row for Storm is number 12 Kenneath Bromwich2nd Row for Warriors is number 17 Isaiah Papali'i
Lock for Storm is number 13 Dale FinucaneLock for Warriors is number 12 Tohu Harris
Interchange for Storm is number 14 Brandon SmithInterchange for Warriors is number 8 Jamayne Taunoa-Brown
Interchange for Storm is number 15 Tino Fa'asuamaleauiInterchange for Warriors is number 14 Chanel Harris-Tavita
Interchange for Storm is number 16 Tom EisenhuthInterchange for Warriors is number 16 Agnatius Paasi
Interchange for Storm is number 17 Nelson Asofa-SolomonaInterchange for Warriors is number 21 Josh Curran
- Referee: Ben Cummins
- Touch Judge: Chris Sutton
- Touch Judge: Drew Oultram
Cameron Munster v Kodi Nikorima. Munster has developed into an elite five-eighth and has been arguably the Storm's best player in 2020, adding another two try assists against Penrith.
Nikorima has forced his way back into the Warriors starting line-up and has been at the centre of everything the Warriors have done well in their two wins over the past month with his running game coming to the fore.