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Storm negotiations with Bellamy on hold

Date

James MacSmith and Guy Hand

Celebrations ... star player Billy Slater and coach Craig Bellamy at a civic reception for the Storm in Melbourne.

Celebrations ... star player Billy Slater and coach Craig Bellamy at a civic reception for the Storm in Melbourne. Photo: Getty Images

Craig Bellamy's management will wait until Melbourne's extended premiership celebrations are concluded before commencing negotiations on a new contract for the supercoach.

In the wake of the team's grand final win over Canterbury on Sunday, Bellamy has spoken of the toll the year has taken on him.

Bellamy's agent John Fordham said his client deserves to relax and enjoy the spoils of victory before sorting out his future.

Bellamy, who is contracted to the Storm for the 2013 season, has consistently said he would wait until the end of the NRL season to sort out his future.

Storm officials are keen to fend off rival clubs and keep Bellamy at the club beyond what will be his 11th season in charge next year.

But Fordham said it was important that Bellamy and the rest of the Storm set-up enjoy their premiership victory first.

"Craig is celebrating a very deserved grand final win and we will leave him to do that," Fordham said.

"When the time comes around we will sit down and talk about his future but that time is not now.

"There is a civic reception in Melbourne today and there are still some club functions to come. We will wait until all that is finished and then sit down and talk.

"It won't happen this week."

Fordham declined to put a timetable on when Bellamy would make an announcement on his future but there are indications it might not come for a number of weeks.

Melbourne's premiership victory has only served to further enhance Bellamy's reputation and his asking price.

He has one year to serve on his current contract with Melbourne and has always said he will see out that agreement.

The grand final winning coach has been linked to big money deals with the Warriors and St George Illawarra but Melbourne are quietly confident Bellamy's ties to his playing group will play a key role in any decision.

Storm chief executive Ron Gauci said at –day's civic reception in Melbourne that he was prepared to wait to secure Bellamy long-term.

"We'll sit down with Craig and John Fordham whenever they're ready," he said.

"If Craig wants to soak up the euphoria and delay talks that's no problem. We would love to keep him long-term, he's the best there is.

"As long as I'm in the chair, he has a job here."

AAP

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