Bellamy concerned about Storm's form
Put the 19 penalties Melbourne Storm conceded against the Cronulla Sharks aside because the stat that really made coach Craig Bellamy’s blood boil in the 14-4 loss was the 14 uncompleted sets.
"I'm not here to criticise the referees. I'm not here to criticise the way they've decided to go," Bellamy said.
"I was really disappointed in our performance. That's all I can control, or partly control, so that's going to be my focus. The other stuff there will be a lot of talk about it but I'm more concerned about the way we're playing.
"We need to look at our own backyard first. Our performance wasn't good enough tonight."
Storm captain Cameron Smith looked very glum sitting beside his coach. As the most senior player in the game, in terms of being the one who has played the most NRL games and Origin matches, Smith was asked about his viewpoint on the whistle-a-thon by referees.
"It is frustrating because we didn't play well. So we need to improve a lot," he said.
Smith was one of three Melbourne players marched 10 metres by referee Matt Cecchin for back-chatting.
Match: Sharks vs Storm
Venue: Southern Cross Group Stadium
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Smith continued his argument with Cecchin and was sent to the sin-bin for 10 minutes in the 52nd minute. It had everyone in the Southern Cross Group Stadium scratching their heads not being able to recall the last time Smith - the Australian captain - was sin-binned.
"Neither can I," Smith said.
"We didn't get any momentum in the game but we were our own worst enemy. I don't even know what our completion rate (66 percent) was at the end of the match. But we were very poor with our handling.
"It's something that has plagued our season so far. I know it's only been four rounds. It's been an issue in every game we've played so that's something we need to fix quite quickly."
At least Smith was singing from the same song sheet as Bellamy. But the two-time premiership-winning coach did admit it was a frustrating game to watch due to the whopping 33 penalties - 19-14 in Cronulla's favour.
"It was frustrating ... more because of the way we played," Bellamy said.
"We kept dropping the ball ... I had three or four guys back-chatting tonight which is not usually part of our game. So there’s a few things there we need to tidy up on."