The Storm had their work cut out for them against Wests Tigers in round one while the Rabbitohs were stung by an improved Broncos outfit.
Melbourne's stunning round one record looked in danger as they coped with the absences of Cam Munster and Harry Grant plus injuries to Brandon Smith, George Jennings and Christian Welch, but their class eventually shone through.
The Rabbitohs were lucklustre in their opening loss of the season but it's hardly panic stations given the absence of Latrell Mitchell and game-eve injury to his stand-in Blake Taaffe.
Expect each side to be better this week as the Storm hunt a 2-0 start to the year and the Bunnies look to open their 2022 account.
Sportsbet Betting preview: Storm v Rabbitohs
Storm: The Storm are 1-17 with no late changes.
Brandon Smith (broken hand) is out for five weeks while Christian Welch (Achilles) and George Jennings (knee) are set to miss the remainder of the season. Cameron Munster and Harry Grant come into the side after serving suspensions. Dean Ieremia replaces Jennings on the wing while Jesse Bromwich is back at prop following his COVID-19 quarantine last week.
The bench remains the same following the side’s win over Wests Tigers.
Chris Lewis is 18th man and Nick Meaney was the last man cut an hour before kick-off.
Rabbitohs: A late switch an hour before kick-off with Siliva Havili promoted to the starting side and Cameron Murray going to the bench. Davvy Moale has come into the side on the bench and Michael Chee Kam drops to 18th man.
Latrell Mitchell returns from suspension, moving Alex Johnston back to the wing and Josh Mansour drops out.
Blake Taaffe (ankle) remains sidelined with Alex Johnston shifting back to his preferred wing spot and Josh Mansour dropping out.
Match: Storm v Rabbitohs
Round 2 -
Fullback for Storm is number 1 Ryan PapenhuyzenFullback for Rabbitohs is number 1 Latrell Mitchell
Winger for Storm is number 2 Dean IeremiaWinger for Rabbitohs is number 2 Alex Johnston
Centre for Storm is number 3 Reimis SmithCentre for Rabbitohs is number 3 Jaxson Paulo
Centre for Storm is number 4 Justin OlamCentre for Rabbitohs is number 4 Campbell Graham
Winger for Storm is number 5 Xavier CoatesWinger for Rabbitohs is number 5 Taane Milne
Five-Eighth for Storm is number 6 Cameron MunsterFive-Eighth for Rabbitohs is number 6 Cody Walker
Halfback for Storm is number 7 Jahrome HughesHalfback for Rabbitohs is number 7 Lachlan Ilias
Prop for Storm is number 8 Jesse BromwichProp for Rabbitohs is number 8 Tevita Tatola
Hooker for Storm is number 9 Harry GrantHooker for Rabbitohs is number 9 Damien Cook
Prop for Storm is number 10 Nelson Asofa-SolomonaProp for Rabbitohs is number 10 Mark Nicholls
2nd Row for Storm is number 11 Felise Kaufusi2nd Row for Rabbitohs is number 11 Keaon Koloamatangi
2nd Row for Storm is number 12 Kenneath Bromwich2nd Row for Rabbitohs is number 12 Jai Arrow
Lock for Storm is number 13 Josh KingLock for Rabbitohs is number 15 Siliva Havili
Interchange for Storm is number 14 Tyran WishartInterchange for Rabbitohs is number 13 Cameron Murray
Interchange for Storm is number 15 Alec MacDonaldInterchange for Rabbitohs is number 14 Jacob Host
Interchange for Storm is number 16 Trent LoieroInterchange for Rabbitohs is number 16 Thomas Burgess
Interchange for Storm is number 17 Tepai MoeroaInterchange for Rabbitohs is number 18 Davvy Moale
Replacement for Storm is number 18 Chris LewisReplacement for Rabbitohs is number 17 Michael Chee Kam
- Referee: Gerard Sutton
- Touch Judge: Liam Kennedy
- Touch Judge: Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski
- Senior Review Official: Grant Atkins
Cameron Munster v Cody Walker: Munster looked fit, fresh and dangerous in the trials and should be doubly so here after serving a one-game ban in round one. Walker looked frustrated at times with none of his accustomed left-edge threats alongside him but should benefit greatly from the return of Mitchell.
Both of these sides were on the wrong end of possession in round one, with the Bunnies holding 48% of the ball against Brisbane and the Storm just 45% against the Tigers - but it was the Storm who were far better able to counter this disadvantage by making what ball they had count.