Storm not panicking despite NRL loss - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Storm not panicking despite NRL loss

Steve Jancetic 27/08/2011 01:31:56 PM Comments (0)

It took Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy all of ten minutes following Friday night's brutal loss to Manly for him to start planning a recovery mission.

While most of the attention centred on the wild brawl which is sure to have ramifications for both clubs in coming days, there was no hiding from the fact the Storm were thoroughly outplayed in going down 18-4 at Brookvale Oval.

The soon-to-be-crowned minor premiers played nothing like the side which had romped to 12 straight victories and, while the likely return of halfback Cooper Cronk will definitely help, Bellamy knows the Queensland Origin star won't be the panacea to all their woes.

It's why just minutes after he finished his media commitments on Friday night, Bellamy sat down for a lengthy chat with Matthew Johns, the man he had lent on for tactical support before the former Newcastle and Cronulla star was sacked in controversial circumstances two years ago.

With next Sunday's clash against Sydney Roosters their final hitout before the finals, Bellamy said there were some aspects he would need to address, but he also said now was not the time to hit the panic button.

"We don't want to overreact here, we won 12 in a row," Bellamy said on Friday night.

"A lot of (the media) thought we had to have a loss, that it's going to help us down the track. I didn't believe that but hopefully you're right.

"Hopefully that will sharpen us up and get back to doing what works for us because what we did tonight there for long periods for the game don't work for us.

"These guys have done a tremendous job this year and we're pretty disappointed with what happened tonight ... so while there'll be some things said during the week, there's been a lot of other good things that have happened the last three or four months that we think we can build on as well."

Storm captain Cameron Smith said the side could at least take some solace from the fact that while their execution may have been off,their attitude remained on track.

"That was well below our standards ... we made it so hard for ourselves," Smith said.

"The effort in defence was great. I don't know how many times we had repeat sets and we defended our tryline - I think Manly had 12 more sets than us in the whole game and scored one try in the second half.

"It was just silly dropped balls, forward passes, getting tackled into touch, just soft turnovers that you can't afford to do against not only Manly, you can't afford to do it against anyone.

"We complete the way we did tonight we wouldn't have beaten an under 20s team.

"We need to fix it up fairly quickly - there's one match to go in this competition and then we're into the finals."

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