Bellamy no clearer on vacant halfback spot after scratchy win at Lottoland
Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy admits he faces the tough task of having to settle on who will play halfback in the push towards the Telstra Premiership finals series after mixed performances from his inexperienced playmakers during the representative period.
In-between the Storm's six victories the side have used Jahrome Hughes, Ryley Jacks and Brodie Croft in the halves, but with Maroons five-eighth Cameron Munster due back next week, it shapes as Bellamy's biggest selection decision.
Croft started the season in the No.7 jersey but has fallen out of favour in recent months until a recall against St George Illawarra sparked a comeback from the 21-year-old.
Teammate Jacks has also been shuffled around, while Hughes has been dominant at fullback but will make way for Billy Slater.
"It has been different for us, and hopefully we can settle down with one leading into the semis," Bellamy said.
"Having said that sometimes if you have one guy there and he gets injured towards the end of the year, you're putting a guy in there cold.
"Whereas because we've had experience, if that does come up we should be well prepared for it.
"It's been a strange experience for me and the whole team. We had Cooper Cronk playing for 15 years basically and he didn't miss too many games through Origin and injury."
The side's jaded performance against the Sea Eagles would not have made Bellamy's decisions any easier with their Origin stars set for a return.
"It wasn't pretty but I thought we started poorly both halves," Bellamy said when reflecting on the 14-13 victory.
"The one thing I can say is during our Origin periods is that we were gritty.
"We were patchy in some places but really gritty and lucky in the end, a bit of a reward for just hanging in there."