Blair wants big finish to Storm NRL career - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Blair wants big finish to Storm NRL career

Melissa Woods 24/08/2011 03:21:45 PM Comments (0)

They may have delivered the worst experience of his NRL playing career, but Melbourne forward Adam Blair insists facing Manly hold no special significance.

The competition's leading two teams face off on Friday night at Brookvale Oval, where the Sea Eagles haven't lost this season.

The game could be a preview of another grand final between the sides, after successive clashes in the 2007 and 2008 deciders.

While Melbourne claimed the first one, Manly delivered a 40-0 thrashing in 2008 - one of the worst defeats in the Storm's history and the largest grand final margin.

Melbourne were forced to play that match without their skipper Cameron Smith, who was suspended for a grapple tackle, and on Friday could again be without one of their key players in injured star Cooper Cronk.

The robust halfback, who has only missed seven games in the past five seasons, has a final chance to book a seat on the plane to Sydney with a fitness test on his ankle on Thursday morning.

Both clubs have this week downplayed the rivalry between the clubs, but Blair admitted that result from 2008 was one he couldn't erase.

"I think that was the worst I've felt," said Blair.

But with only six Storm players remaining from that era, the Wests Tigers-bound forward said it wasn't something the team dwelled on.

"We've moved on from then. It was a few years ago now so we're just thinking about this year and what we can do."

He anticipated the battle of the forwards to be one of the most brutal of the season, particularly coming on the home turf of the Sea Eagles.

"All over, I think they've got a strong team, some big boys in their pack, so it's going to be a tough job for us."

Blair delivered an impressive second half in his side's win over the Dragons last Friday night after a quiet opening stanza.

The game was a reflection of his inconsistent season, but he said he felt on track for a big finish at the club where he started his NRL career in 2006.

"I've been a bit up and down. I've been moved around a fair bit to try to cover the (injured) boys," he said.

"But I'm back in the middle now and trying to lead.

"I just want to finish here on a high and do what I can for the boys.

"A win over Manly would be great for the team and we can build confidence around that."

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