Storm drama not on Bellamy's mind - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Storm drama not on Bellamy's mind

By David Beniuk 17/05/2010 09:50:28 PM Comments (0)

NSW coach Craig Bellamy is adamant the salary cap drama which rocked his NRL club, Melbourne, has had no impact on his State of Origin preparations.

Bellamy has weathered a cyclone at the Storm since the club's fateful day on April 22 when massive rorting of the cap resulted in the side being stripped of two premierships, docked their 2010 points and forced to think about splitting up their champion playing roster.

"It feels basically the same, I've been excited for a little while," Bellamy said on Monday night as he unveiled a Blues side he hopes can end Queensland's four-year dominance of the Origin series.

"Obviously the last month hasn't been an easy time but at the end of the day that didn't stop me planning for Origin and things have gone on basically the same as they would have if everything had been OK.

"I'm really looking forward to Origin, I'm as committed as I've ever been at this time of the campaign and really looking forward to getting into camp with these guys.

"I wouldn't be here if I wasn't up for the challenge."

Bellamy said the main lesson from his two failed campaigns at the helm of the Blues was countering the big, fast Queensland backs and he and the selectors had picked their side accordingly.

But he said the Maroons would take on a different complexion without key forwards Steve Price, Dallas Johnson, Michael Crocker and Ben Hannant.

Price, Crocker and Hannant are injured, while Johnson left the Storm at the end of last season to head to the UK Super League.

"I think they'll miss Price, and I think they'll miss Johnson and Crocker but the guys that they'll put in there will do a great job for them," Bellamy said.

In their place, he expects to see the likes of South Sydney destroyer Dave Taylor and experienced St George Illawarra campaigner Neville Costigan.

He said he expected Storm hooker Cameron Smith to play, after suffering an elbow injury, if he remained "50-50".

Bellamy said the Blues preparation would differ this year with the squad not breaking camp, but sticking together for the duration of the build-up.

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