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No questioning 2020 champs: Bellamy

Premiership-winning coach Craig Bellamy says although the 2020 season has a vastly different flavour to it, the grand final winners will have earned their title.

Despite the coronavirus-forced halt placed on the season after round two - one that will end on May 28 - Bellamy has no misgivings about this year's competition.

He says the shortened season should take nothing away from what happens in the finals.

"I don't think so, at all. That's just my opinion and [it] doesn't make other people wrong if they think differently," Bellamy told

"We are going ahead with a competition – it will be there for every club for quite a few months now no matter how it's made up."

The enforced break due to the coronavirus pandemic has reduced the regular 25-round season by four games.

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"It's not as if we've only had two rounds and then we're having finals," Bellamy said.

"We get 20 games and that's a lot compared with other football codes. The NFL has just 16 games.

"To me, it's still a viable competition. So it doesn't matter how it's made up, although it's certainly going to be different without crowds.

"But at the end of the day, it is still a thorough enough competition and in my opinion there doesn't need to be an asterisk against it at all."

Another thing Bellamy is certain of is that his Test and NSW Origin winger Josh Addo-Carr is doing his best to restore everyone's faith in him.

Last time they met: Storm v Eels - Semi Final, 2019

The 24-year-old damaged his reputation after images of him camping, riding motorcycles and shooting with friends on Latrell Mitchell's private property were circulated on social media, when everyone was in lockdown.

The NRL imposed a $50,000 fine (60 per cent suspended) on the pair and is considering Addo-Carr's response to the breach notice.

Regardless, Bellamy cannot fault the player's attitude and commitment.

"He's been good the whole time since we've been back [training]," Bellamy said.

"It was a silly thing to do, but I also know him as a guy that he would never hurt anyone intentionally or break rules on purpose.

"He did make a mistake. He made a bad choice, even a dangerous choice. Still, he has paid a heavy price – a substantial penalty.

"He was a little quiet the first couple of days. I think that was a realisation that he'd done the wrong thing.

Storm winger Josh Addo-Carr.
Storm winger Josh Addo-Carr. ©NRL Photos

"He's been back to normal by being really good at training and working really hard. He's been great with the young blokes in our squad helping them out. And it's always great having him as part of the group with the infectious laugh he's got."

Bellamy said he hasn't needed to pull Addo-Carr aside to make sure his head is in the right place.

But he did have a chat with new recruit, former Wests Tigers centre Paul Momirovski, who has been swapped with Storm hooker Harry Grant for the rest of the year so both clubs can plug holes.

Bellamy lost Will Chambers (rugby) and Curtis Scott (Raiders) but Justin Olam and Marion Seve seem to be producing the right goods.

"It's really hard for Paul at the moment," Bellamy said.

"Our first two games were away and we won both of them. Justin and Marion played well. So they're training in our centres at the moment – we'll see what happens in the next couple of weeks.

"I had a chat with him the other day. He understands the situation."

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National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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