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Bellamy to keep Smith at five-eighth

By Melissa Woods 05/04/2009 11:37:43 AM Comments (0)

Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy intends continuing his experimentation playing Test hooker Cameron Smith at five-eighth despite its failure against Gold Coast.

The Titans outplayed the Storm across the park in their round four clash, running out shock 18-6 winners.

It was only Melbourne's fourth loss in 45 matches at Olympic Park as the home side lacked intensity, particularly in the first half when they were kept scoreless and made a number of uncharacteristic errors thanks to some enthusiastic Titans defence.

The experimentation reaped rewards the previous week against the Cowboys, with regular five-eighth Greg Inglis relishing more room to move while playing in the centres.

Bellamy again started with Smith in the halves and Inglis in the centres, with Ryan Hinchcliffe recovering from a head knock at hooker, but it didn't have the impact and the coach reverted to his tried and true combination after 30 minutes.

Bellamy later acknowledged it wasn't a success.

"It worked OK last week but I didn't think Hinchy (Hinchcliffe) got too many chances and Cameron never got too many chances out wide because, every time we had the footy we were just coming out of our own half and when we did get down there we turned it over on very early tackles.

"You're not going to build any pressure on the opposition doing that."

But he hadn't considered abandoning fashioning Smith into a five-eighth.

"If we think it's going to help us at the start of the game, end of the game, during the game we'll do it, if we don't think it is we won't do it," Bellamy said.

"If we think it's going to help us we'll do it again, without a doubt."

The Storm are likely to be in for a torrid week with the coach and captain Smith talking about their "poor attitude" which Bellamy said he planned to address.

Smith was livid with some of the decisions made by his side.

"We took a couple of easy options ... we want to go out there and try and build pressure and get mistakes out of the Titans and we didn't do that at all," Smith said.

"We turned the ball over on the first tackle, we were putting chip kicks in from mid-field and that's not us.

'We grind out tough wins and you could tell we weren't prepared to do that."

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