Rugby League


Bellamy says Storm has Warriors' number

Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy says the Storm ''got what they deserved'' in its last loss to the Warriors but feels it is better prepared to take on its bogey side in today's Anzac Day NRL encounter at AAMI Park.

Not that the Storm believes the Warriors are a bogey side, although three losses in their last four meetings - the most recent in their preliminary final last season - suggest otherwise.

Bellamy said the Warriors simply outplayed them.

''Last year they beat us here twice. They played better than us on both occasions and they got what they deserved and we got what we deserved,'' he said.

''They played their usual brand of footy and really hung on to the footy and when a team plays like that, especially the Warriors, they're really hard to handle.''

While there's no grand final berth on the line the Storm, which expects all its representative players to line up, has the opportunity to set a new club record with eight successive wins to start the season.


Bellamy also said his team was honoured to have the opportunity to play on Anzac Day in front of what is expected to be its biggest crowd of the year.

The Storm felt it was out-muscled by the Warriors pack, which made plenty of ground up the middle, as well as the side's ability to offload. Bellamy said the return of ex-Storm forward Ryan Hoffman and the addition of veteran Jason Ryles would boost his side.

''We're a little bit bigger than last year and that was a little bit of issue,'' he said. ''It's great to have Hoffy back and Jason's doing a really good job for us.''

They felt they got a good test of their measure to handle the Warriors' game plan in their hard-fought last-round win over Canterbury, when they ran out winners.

''We think we know how they're going to go about their game and I'm sure they think they know how we're going to go about our game,'' Bellamy said. ''They're a very dangerous team when they hang on to the footy and things start clicking for them and their offloads start sticking.

''They're a wonderful bunch of ball-runners and guys like [Shaun Johnson and [Kevin] Locke are hard to handle.'' AAP