Complacency is a dirty word for Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy but that’s exactly what the veteran mentor believes happened to his side during their narrow loss to Canberra on Saturday.
The Storm looked like they were on their way to another easy home victory when they led the Raiders 18-0 inside half an hour of the AAMI Park contest.
But the Raiders hit back to make it 18-4 at half-time and then scored three further tries during the second half to pull off a remarkable comeback victory.
Bellamy thinks the Storm expected the Canberra side to sit down and be steamrolled after the disastrous start and that his players got ahead of themselves.
"I hate saying it, but I think we may have got a bit complacent at the start of the second half," Bellamy said after the 22-18 loss.
"I would hate to think that was the case but that is what it looked a little bit like to me.
They (the Raiders) have been in the top four the whole year and are a real good side.
Match: Storm v Raiders
Round 22 -
Venue: AAMI Park, Melbourne
- LIVE PASS
"We were feeling pretty good about things at half-time but you know you have got to work again ... we lacked some real grit tonight."
Bellamy said he will give his players the chance to provide him with their opinions on what went wrong when they review the match on Monday, but he expects them to share his sentiments.
"I might be wrong as they (the playing group) will have an opinion on it as well," Bellamy said.
"It's certainly not terminal.
"It (complacency) has reared its head a couple of times this year ... that’s the disappointing thing."
The Storm still remain in the box seat to finish the regular season in first place on the Telstra Premiership Ladder, with Bellamy’s side probably only requiring one victory from their remaining three matches to clinch the minor premiership.
That's why Bellamy remains hopeful that the Storm can bounce back from their poor second half against the Raiders and regain their best form prior to the finals.
"We pride ourselves on being consistent each and every game," Bellamy said.
"If you switch off for a little bit, it is hard to turn it back on again and tonight we just couldn’t turn it back on again."