Jake Mamo makes a break against the Storm in Round 19.

Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy and captain Cameron Smith have questioned the validity of Newcastle fullback Jake Mamo's try midway through the first half in the aftermath of the Storm's 20-16 win on Sunday afternoon.

Mamo was awarded the try by the bunker despite catching the ball on the inside of decoy runner Mitchell Barnett's outside shoulder.

 


While Barnett didn't stop his run to prevent the Storm defence from tackling Mamo, the back-rower did catch the attention of Melbourne halfback Cooper Cronk – which opened up the space to score between the decoy and ball-passer Trent Hodkinson. 

Bellamy was unsure if Kevin Proctor's tackle on Hodkinson just prior to the Knights halfback passing had any bearing on the bunker's final decision either, but confirmed he'll seek clarification from NRL Referees' boss Tony Archer.

"There has been tries this year where if you catch the ball on the inside of your lead runner, it's not a try. Sure the lead runner didn't run an in-to-out line, he just went out, but at the same time Mamo still caught the ball inside him," Bellamy said. 

"I'm not sure if Kevin Proctor's tackle had any influence on the way Hodkinson handled the ball. But if that ball's a clean pass then I can't see how they could award that try after what's happened earlier this season."

Knights coach Nathan Brown had no problems with the bunker's decision to award Mamo's try.

"It was definitely a fair try simply because Barnett drifted out and Cooper Cronk ran to him," Brown said.

"That's Cooper's decision at the end of the day, if Cooper doesn't run to him then there's no space so I thought it was a fair. Cooper could've held his own there but he didn't."

Storm skipper Smith argued Cronk had no choice but the one he made. 

"They said Cooper made a bad defensive read which is confusing because if the guy at the back that received the ball isn't there then Cooper makes a good defensive read he said.

"That's the whole reason I think you're not allowed to receive the ball inside because you're hidden. You can't see. Cooper couldn't see (Mamo) there."

Otherwise, Bellamy admitted the Storm have struggled against the Knights in recent years and didn't want to add any fuel to their healthy rivalry by resting Queensland Origin duo Smith and Cronk.

"I didn't want to send out a message to the team on the bottom of the table that we'll rest our Origin players. Hopefully we'll give them a rest at some stage but I didn't think it was the right game for it," Bellamy said.

"To the boys credit, and they always are, they're willing to back up after Origin. They were two of the better players on Wednesday night and they were two our better against the Knights."

The idea of being rested remained a taboo topic for Smith when asked about it. 

"That's an ongoing discussion from my end," Smith said. "It might a little bit different for Craig. 

"We haven't gone down that path in the past... but from my point of view, if I'm feeling good and we want to keep some momentum then I'll be putting my hand up to play."