Melbourne Storm is heading back to its home away from home on the Sunshine Coast for a two-week mid-season camp.
The reigning NRL premiers will be in some very familiar surroundings, basing themselves at Novotel Sunshine Coast Resort at Twin Waters where they spent four months of the COVID-impacted 2020 season and will train at Sunshine Coast Stadium, the club’s home ground for six games in the premiership year.
However, there will be one major difference in their 2021 Sunshine Coast camp. With no travel bubble restrictions in place, this time the Storm squad will be able to undertake a number of community-based activities.
Storm will arrive on the Sunshine Coast on Friday, May 14 and stay through until May 26.
During the camp, which will include all members of the NRL squad, Melbourne will play three NRL matches:
- The Magic Round “home” game against St George Illawarra at Suncorp Stadium on May 16;
- The round 11 clash with Canberra Raiders in Canberra on May 22 and;
- The round 12 match against Brisbane Broncos at Suncorp Stadium on Thursday night, May 27.
Storm General Manager – Football Frank Ponissi said connecting with Storm’s Queensland members and fans and getting the best possible preparation for the three matches would be the focus of the camp.
"I know our boys can’t wait to get back to the Sunshine Coast," Ponissi said.
"We had such an enjoyable and rewarding time there in 2020, but of course we were unable to interact with our members and fans like we wanted to.
"This year, as long as the situation remains as it is now, will be different and we’ll be able to interact with everyone, including our sister club the Sunshine Coast Lightning, instead of having to stay in a bubble.
We have four consecutive games away from AAMI Park. Three of these games are within a 10-day period and with two of them at Suncorp, it was an obvious decision to be based at the Sunshine Coast where we are very familiar after last season’s hub as well as our close relationship with the area through the Falcons and the Lightning.Frank Ponissi General Manager - Football
"The four games we have in May is a critical period of our season as it just before the Origin period.
"As well as giving us the best possible preparation for the three games in 10 days it is also an opportunity to return to an area that we are close to."
Storm’s community activities will include an open training session from 10:30am to 1:00pm at Sunshine Coast Stadium on Saturday, May 15.
The NRL squad will be available for photos and autographs, with the Provan-Summons Trophy also on display.
Members of the Storm squad will also visit the Queensland Secondary Schools Rugby League Championships being held at the stadium from May 22-25.