Storm coach might rest his elite players - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Storm coach might rest his elite players

Melissa Woods 01/05/2011 05:16:03 PM Comments (0)

Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy will consider resting his representative players for their NRL showdown with Brisbane for fear of burn out from their gruelling schedule.

The teams are set to meet in Brisbane on Saturday night, 24 hours after the Kangaroos take on New Zealand on the Gold Coast.

And with the first State of Origin just over two weeks from that match, Bellamy says he may rest his stars such as Cameron Smith and Billy Slater.

"We'll do what we think is best for our club and best for our players and it will be a little bit on those guys, if they feel up to playing or not," Bellamy said.

"We'll put the best side we've got out there but at the same time we're not going to make the workload too hard for our top players.

"We're not going to burn them out for the rest of the year."

The coach, who oversaw his team's 42-12 romp over Newcastle on Saturday night in Melbourne, has long been a harsh critic of the crowded playing schedule for representative players.

This year he believes is particularly bad, with the Origin so soon after the Test.

"I think it's a really tough call on all the players who play in the two games this weekend.

"We should play the Test on Friday night and perhaps the City-Country on Sunday afternoon and start a week early and have that weekend off.

"You're a chance of having physically tired players going into the Origin series, that's why I think we should have that weekend off.

"Two weeks before an Origin you don't want to have guys playing two games on the weekend.

"That's not in my control but it's something we need to look at in the future."

Storm skipper Cameron Smith had already got the calender out and didn't like what he saw.

"It's going to be a pretty tough next couple of weeks," he said.

"If we play rep footy and back up for these matches I think we're going to be playing something like four games in 14 days and that's a pretty hectic schedule for the typeof game that we play."

Despite his coach's concerns, he said, barring injury, he would lining up for the Brisbane match.

"I know all the boys that do play rep footy and get through the games all right, we'll be putting our hand up to play for this team.

"We don't want to be sitting on the sidelines we want to be out there doing the best for our club.

"We've done it for a few years now ... so we've got a bit of experience in how best to get through it."

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