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Future: Storm falling - Manly on the Rise

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by deadlyeagle, Oct 6, 2008.

  1. deadlyeagle

    deadlyeagle Member

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    Storm headed for a fall
    06/10/2008 3:44 PM
    Adam Lucius
    Sportal

    Melbourne's record loss to Manly in the 2008 grand final will reverberate well into the future, with the promised Storm dynasty looking shakier than Brian Waldron's grip on reality.

    Three grand final appearances in three years is not to be easily discounted or downplayed, but sport is all about winning and Melbourne has just the one title to show for all its recent dominance.

    For a reference point, just look at how history judged the Sea Eagles sides of 1995-97.

    They won in '96 but the two losses sandwiched either side meant they were never afforded the accolades they probably deserved as the undisputed kings of the regular season.

    Melbourne changed the way the game is played and will be remembered – if not with fondness – as a remarkably tough, resilient and talented team.

    But you've got to cash in while you're at the top and the Storm have failed to do so.

    Now they may be looking at the other side of the summit and heading into freefall.

    Before the Melbourne faithful start up with the Joe Kinnear-styled attacks that 'featured' the last time this writer dared questioned Storm's standing in the league world (you guys went strangely quiet around 7pm Sunday), look at the facts.

    From the grand final side, Israel Folau, Mick Crocker, Matt Geyer, Antonio Kaufusi, Jeremy Smith and Russell Aitken (possibly) won't be seen in the navy blue and purple next year.

    Melbourne has made a modest investment in the player market, snaring Ryan Hinchcliffe and sacked Bulldogs halfback Arana Taumata from under the noses of … well, nobody.

    That's too much quality leaving and not enough joining for it not to have an impact.

    Coach Craig Bellamy admitted as much when asked at the post-grand final press conference what the future held for his side.

    "We are losing a lot of players, without doubt. Losing some really good quality players," he conceded.

    "Obviously 'Boofa's' (Geyer) retiring but when you lose guys like Folau and Smith and Crocker, Kaufusi, you're losing quality players there, but that's the way the system works and it's happened to other teams before."

    "I don't know how we're going to go next year to be quite honest but I tell you we'll be in there working hard in the pre-season and as Cooper (Cronk) said we like to pride ourselves as a club that never gives up."

    "We'll be working real hard so we can play well again next year."

    Manly coach Des Hasler was back at work the morning after the night before, already thinking about the future less than 24 hours after his breakthrough win.

    While the Sea Eagles farewell veteran Steve Menzies, centre Steve Bell, prop Mark Bryant and utility player Luke Williamson, Hasler had a contingency plan in place.

    Newcastle's clever pivot Chris Bailey, powerhouse Parramatta winger Tony Williams and Penrith's Shane Rodney will head to the northern beaches next year, supplementing the outstanding talent already at the coach's disposal.

    Sea Eagles fans have every right to look to the future with plenty of optimism.

    Melbourne? Let's just say Bleak City could be even bleaker next winter.
     
  2. Jethro

    Jethro This space is for rent Staff Member Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    In my opinion, They (Storm) will be flat out making the 8 next year.
     
  3. Zep

    Zep Active Member

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    i wouldn't put the storm down yet, They have quality in the 4 key positions as they are known now, 1,6,7,9. But without a forward pack who knows?!... brent white is a non entity in the pack. the rest are barely known. It will be interesting.
     
  4. Downie

    Downie Active Member

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    I've always liked Adam Lucius' work, he's a good league writer, something we desperately need with the likes of Wilson running rampant.
     
  5. Fro

    Fro Well-Known Member

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    "with the promised Storm dynasty looking shakier than Brian Waldron's grip on reality."

    thats the quote of the year right there :)
     
  6. Chip and Chase

    Chip and Chase True Supporter Staff Member Administrator Premium Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    He's certainly no Storm fan that's for sure.
     
  7. Matabele

    Matabele Well-Known Member

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      They do have a habit of picking up average forwards and making something of them in their system

    Alex Chan and Ben Cross are two recent examples.  But White must have pictures of Bellamy.

    I didn;t expect they'd make the 8 in 2006 after Ox and Bell left so I wouldn't write them out of finals contention.  But next year I can't see them winning.

    On paper the Broncos would seem improvers with Folou joining the side that ran the Storm so close.  But then they are losing some very good quality players to fit him under the cap and that will hurt them.

    The Sharks will be better than this year - but they were diabolical in every game that counted.

    The Cowboys are ones to watch in my opinion.
     
  8. willstyles

    willstyles Active Member

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    Jeff Lima is a better example than Alex Chan (who I never rated).

    Lima and Ben Cross both turned into very, very good forwards under Bellamy. Lima in particular I reckon, he went from being fat, lazy fella at the Tigers, went to France for a year and really should have just dropped out of the game, but he had a crack at Melbourne and in my opinion he's in the top 5 props in the game.

    White is just hopeless though. Only plays well against Ben Ross apparently.
     
  9. Nutzcraw

    Nutzcraw Active Member

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    I didn't know we signed Shane Rodney.

    Good player if he stays fit.
     
  10. Canteen Worker

    Canteen Worker Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    I love that sig Nutz. One of the best I have seen!!! :) :)
     

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