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Stats that matter: Round 1 v Rabbitohs

Brandon Smith made the most tackles for Melbourne (35) in our round 1 win over the Rabbitohs at AAMI Park on Thursday night, in a defensive performance Craig Bellamy described as "terrific".

He played 70 minutes at hooker and tackled at 89.7% efficiency.

"I wasn't quite sure how long he'd be on the field for," Bellamy said post-match about Smith starting in the number 9 jersey.

"To play those minutes was outstanding. He was one of our best and defensively he was terrific."

Ryan Papenhuyzen led every other key stat for Storm, including most run metres (175), line breaks (one), line break assists (two) and tackle breaks (5).

He grabbed a double, ran for 174 metres and kicked five goals from six attempts in a standout performance.

The Storm side maintained the club's exceptional record of not having lost a round one encounter since 2001.