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Storm forward Ryan Hinchcliffe will depart the club at season's end.

Melbourne were reminded on Monday night of just how unforgiving this game can be.

They went into Monday night's meeting against the bottom placed Knights with a golden chance to move inside the top four but by the end of the 80 minutes had seen their premiership aspirations turn into what is now seen as a long shot.

The Storm must now win its final two games against the Cowboys (home) and Broncos (away) to even assure themselves the right to host an elimination final. 


It shapes as a monumental task given both games will fall either side of back-to-back five-day breaks.

Such is the closeness of the Telstra Premiership this season, should they manage to win both games Melbourne would be in with a shot of catching the wounded Rabbitohs who currently sit precariously in fourth place.

Two days removed from the Monday nightmare, you could still feel the disappointment reverberating around the walls of AAMI Park.

"It was a huge blow, it was a massive game for us to be honest and we are really disappointed," Ryan Hinchcliffe said.

"Every players deals with it individually and I suppose by now you realise it's done, it's dusted and you have to move on very quickly.

"We need to bury it today, move on and try and get the group upbeat and looking forward to Saturday night against the Cowboys because it will be tough."

There is the prospect that this weekend's game could be Hinchcliffe's last at AAMI Park before he heads to the Super League in the summer, though the veteran is adamant he has not let his mind wander down that road.

Having lost four of their past six games against the Cowboys, Melbourne will have to dig deep to rediscover the confidence that saw them win four of their previous five before Monday night's disappointment.

This is a club that has long shown a tendency to turn things around right when others are prepared to write them off and there will be no better time for them to do just that on Saturday night. 

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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