Storm can't afford Origin lapse: White - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Storm can't afford Origin lapse: White

By Melissa Woods 19/06/2009 03:14:01 PM Comments (0)

Melbourne prop Brett White says his side can't afford an Origin period slide on a such a congested NRL table.

The resurgent Storm host the mercurial Wests Tigers at Olympic Stadium on Sunday afternoon minus stars skipper Cameron Smith, Greg Inglis, Billy Slater and Dallas Johnson who are on Queensland Origin duty.

Recently Melbourne have been among the competition front-runners during the representative season and could afford a lapse but White said not this year.

The Storm are currently fourth, but there are only four points separating the top eight sides.

"You look at the table and how close every one is, a loss can drop us right down the bottom of the eight," said White, who missed NSW Origin selection this year after a late start to the season due to injury.

"It is important but we don't want to worry about outcomes, we've just got to worry about getting the things in place to be at our best on Sunday."

Wests Tigers snapped a five-game losing streak last Monday but they haven't won at Melbourne's home ground in their past seven attempts.

They have however, beaten the Storm in two of their past three meetings, which is enough to make White, who is playing his 100th NRL match, wary.

"The games that they've lost have only been by a couple of points if you look at the last six weeks.

"They know how to stick to teams and play 80 minutes so we know we're going to be there all day.

"They're right up there and when they play us they play with a lot of energy and bring a high intensity game.

The Storm will field their most inexperienced line-up of the season while the Tigers are missing NSW Origin hooker Robbie Farah while second-rower Chris Heighington has been ruled out for six to eight weeks with an adductor muscle injury.

Dane Neilsen will play his second NRL match for the Storm and third in total when the 24-year-old steps in for powerhouse centre Inglis.

With young backs Joseph Tomane and Will Chambers departing Melbourne at season end it's a huge chance to impress.

"Young players realise that this is their shot, their chance to get their name out there and really showcase what they've been working on," White said.

"Dane's been working really hard this year and I know that he realises this is a real chance to get his name out there."

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