Nothing can make up for loss: Bellamy - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Nothing can make up for loss: Bellamy

By Todd Balym 03/10/2009 12:39:28 PM Comments (0)

Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy admits nothing his side produces in Sunday's NRL premiership decider against Parramatta will ever replace the feeling of last year's embarrassing grand final loss to Manly.

With the record 40-0 flogging still burning deep inside, Bellamy said he would instruct his players to completely forget about that sorry ANZ Stadium experience as his team prepares to return to the ground for the first time since that fateful night.

"We're all hurting and we will all probably hurt for a while," said Bellamy.

"(But) last year is dead and buried. We can't change it," Bellamy said.

"If we win this year, they're not going to give us the rings for last year as well.

"At the end of the day, it will always be in our memory I suppose ... (but) it is gone, it is done and we can't change it.

"We just have worry about what we do this week and hopefully we get it right on Sunday afternoon."

The grand final clash with Parramatta couldn't pit two more contrasting teams against each other: it is basically Melbourne versus the anti-Melbourne.

While the Storm have a reputation of an attacking brand of football built around structure, the Eels are somewhat more cavalier in their approach with second-phase play and offloading among their biggest strengths.

Storm fullback Billy Slater knows more than anybody just how dangerous offloading can be.

He risked it all on the biggest stage and got burnt badly in last year's World Cup final for Australia when his wayward pass led to the match-sealing try for New Zealand.

"I suppose you live and die by them. If you want to take the risk and throw it, it can come off and it can't come off," said Slater.

"Offloads are dangerous for any side. If offloads are on, then they are very hard to contain.

"That is the way (Parramatta) have been playing and it's been working for them so I'm sure they're not going to change too many things."

Eels skipper Nathan Cayless was quick to defend his side's tactics, claiming there was more thought put into when they throw the ball around than they've been given credit.

"Everyone thinks that we just throw it out the back and just hope for the best but we do have a bit of a plan," said Cayless.

"We go into every game with a bit of a game plan. Our coach obviously encourages us to pass the football and promote the footy because he doesn't want us to die wondering."

Bellamy wasn't so sure.

He's watched the Eels very closely over the past month and admits he can't figure out exactly what is going on with Parramatta's game plan.

"Their unpredictability is the real strength of them, to be quite honest," said Bellamy.

"They don't play like that every minute of the game either.

"(But) anything can happen with offloads. Where they go, who they go to, what they do with it after it goes."

Rookie Parramatta prop Tim Mannah, however, said it is the major differences between the two football sides that would make the 2009 grand final an event for fans to remember.

"It feels like they try to choke a team to death," said Mannah.

"I think the way we're playing is kind of the opposite style to the way they play so it's going to be an entertaining game and the fans are going to enjoy it."

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