Storm can do it with their eyes closed - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Storm can do it with their eyes closed

By Guy Hand 02/04/2010 11:16:56 PM Comments (0)

For Melbourne duo Cooper Cronk and Billy Slater, it was that perfect moment when a rehearsed training ground trick produced magic in a game.

Cronk's sensational no-look pass to Slater ghosting inside him created the match-sealing try for the Storm in their 17-4 top of the table NRL win over St George Illawarra at Etihad Stadium on Friday.

Both players believed it was more understanding of each other's games as much as practising the move at training that was responsible for a try which promises to be a 2010 TV highlights reel staple.

"The idea was to play uptempo footy and take chances when some of the other blokes were a bit tired," Cronk said.

"At training we've done it, but Bill popped up at the right time today. You communicate where you are, who's running where and sometimes you like to hope it will work."

For Slater, it continued his remarkable try-scoring record at Etihad Stadium where he has scored 15 tries in six matches.

And for man-of-the-match Cronk, it continued his exceptional return from off-season hip surgery which delayed the start of his NRL season.

It was just the halfback's second match back - following on from a superb performance the previous week in the win over Penrith.

While the modest Cronk believes there is still plenty of work for him to do to shake off the rust, Storm coach Craig Bellamy was fulsome in his praise for the halfback.

"It's hard to measure how important it is for him to be back," Bellamy said.

"Having Cooper back strengthens those combinations he has with Billy, that he has with Cameron Smith, that he has with Finchy (Brett Finch).

"I thought he was outstanding last week and I thought he was outstanding again today.

"I'm not sure how long they've been practising that, but it's good to see when they do practise something so hard and it comes off."

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