Bellamy to address cracks in Storm defence
Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy couldn't hide his fury after his side's second loss of the season, going down 38-36 to the Gold Coast Titans at Suncorp Stadium on Saturday.
The Storm have now conceded more than 20 points three times this season – all in the past four rounds – after allowing teams to score that many points just twice in 2016.
It could be the wake-up call the side needs before they enter a difficult Origin period without several of their stars.
Bellamy made sure his side learned from their mistakes after the full-time siren as they move ahead for the rest of the season.
"Obviously straight after the game, he (Bellamy) was disappointed and he let be known he was disappointed with our defensive effort," Storm forward Dale Finucane said.
"It wasn't an angry blast, you could hear more of the disappointment as he spoke that it's uncharacteristic of us. We pride ourselves on our defence and that's what he was most disappointed with. Saying that, it (an angry blast) could be coming today."
With the club imposing a two-week suspension on prop forward Jesse Bromwich, it's been a week of off-field distractions for the side but you won't hear Melbourne using that as justification for their error-riddled performances.
"The fact we've concede those points is disappointing but I'm not 100 per cent sure what to put it down to," Finucane said. "We've had a couple of player movements but that's no excuse. We always say our mantra is next man up.
"Jesse is a massive part of our team and not having him leaves a big gap but we've been without Jesse a few times earlier this year with his thumb injury and back.
"You can't put it down solely to one player, it was a team effort and it wasn't good enough."
The Storm travel to Perth in preparation for a South Sydney Rabbitohs outfit hot off a crushing 28-8 victory over the Wests Tigers on Friday night.
While there are a number of players motivated to use this week's match as another opportunity to stake their Origin claims, potential NSW Blues bolter Finucane is unimpressed with his own form of late.
"I'd love to play Origin – it's something I aspire to but I don't think I've been playing my best recently," Finucane said.
A strong bounce-back win for Melbourne would boost Finucane's chances of earning an Origin debut as well as ensure the club capitalises on their full complement of players before serving ongoing representative duties.
Tohu Harris's return has come at a vital time for the Storm.
"To be able to play all the game on the weekend was really good for him (Harris)," Finucane said. "He looks like he hasn't missed a beat. We're grateful to have him back in the team.
"There's a number of guys there we could be without and you want to do as well as you can before your team is a bit disjointed."