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A stoic defensive effort, led by the tireless work of hooker Harry Grant, saw the Storm edge past the Rabbitohs 18-10 for their third win of the season on Friday night. 

With their side leading by eight inside the final 10 minutes, Grant and fullback Nick Meaney both produced tackles to save certain tries, headlining a gutsy effort from their side across the 80 minutes. 

In a high-quality contest at Accor Stadium, which saw both sides complete over 80 percent of their sets, tries were traded through the opening 10 minutes before the Storm eked out a 12-6 lead at the break.

It was Cameron Munster's try three minutes into the second half, which came off the back of left-side shift that set Xavier Coates free down the left, which wrestled momentum the visitors' way when they led by six points. 

Another Storm try saver

While they did give up a try to Campbell Graham on the hour mark, Melbourne soaked up prolonged periods camped on their line in the second half, with their best saved for the final 10 minutes.

First Meaney knocked the ball free from the grasp of Alex Johnston on his way to the line seven from time, before Grant took Izaac Tu’itupou Thompson into touch to deny a four-pointer minutes later. 

The Rabbitohs lost Johnston to a failed HIA, sustained while attempting to score the try stopped by Meaney, leaving him in doubt for the Good Friday clash against the Bulldogs. 

Match Snapshot 

  • Prolific Rabbitohs winger Alex Johnston is in doubt for the Round 6 clash against the Bulldogs after failing a HIA in the late stages of the loss. 
  • The Storm made 414 tackles compared to South Sydney's 351, with Harry Grant leading the way with a personal haul of 50.
  • Melbourne completed 85 percent of their sets but finished having only had 48 percent of the ball. 
  • The Rabbitohs broke through 55 tackles and had over 300 more run metres than the Storm.
  • It was Storm lock Josh King who opened the scoring when he scooped a loose ball to get over his fourth career try in his 109th game. 
  • A slick Cameron Murray offload after he made a half break 20 metres out sent Cody Walker over for his third try in two games to tie the game again. 
  • Damien Cook then pulled off a remarkable try-saving tackle on his opposite number Harry Grant, after some frantic attacking football from the Storm. 
  • Will Warbrick powered through would-be tackles from Alex Johnston and Isaiah Tass to give the Storm the lead on 21 minutes, with Nick Meaney converting from the sideline. 

Warbrick won't be stopped

  • As the Storm had the Rabbitohs camped on their own line inside the last two minutes of the half, Xavier Coates let them off the hook by touching a short dropout before it went 10 metres and conceding a penalty. 
  • Up 12-6 at the half, the Storm wasted little time in stretching their advantage after the break, scoring through Cameron Munster after Coates broke free down the left and kicked back in field for his No.6. 
  • Nice ball playing from Latrell Mitchell created just enough indecision in the Storm defence to send Campbell Graham over on the hour mark, but he missed the ensuing conversion to leave the led at eight points. 
  • Nick Meaney's tackle seven minutes from time saved a try and ended in Johnston failing a HIA, before Grant came up with a try-saver of his own a few minutes later. 
  • The Storm have now won eight of their past nine games against the Rabbitohs.

Play of the Game 

And adventurous left-side spread from the Storm which ended in a couple of nice pieces of individual skill. Xavier Coates stretched them initially with a striding run out wide, before he neatly kicked in field for Cameron Munster to collect and score a crucial try which put them ahead by 12 after the ensuing conversion. 

Munster on the money

What they Said 

"It comes back down to the first half. We just didn't come with the intensity that we have the last few weeks. You could feel it pre-game that we weren't quite where we needed to be and we were just waiting for something to happen. Disappointing tonight for sure." –  Rabbitohs coach Jason Demetriou.

Rabbitohs: Round 5

"There were some desperate times in the second half. They had about 33 tackles inside our 20 [in the second half]; sometimes you don't get that in a whole game. I thought they were really brave tonight. We made it really hard on ourselves at times, but they backed that up with our best defensive game of the season, without a doubt." –  Storm coach Craig Bellamy. 

Storm: Round 5

What's Next

The Rabbitohs host the Bulldogs in the annual Good Friday clash up next, while it's a quick turnaround for the Storm, with the Roosters at AAMI Park awaiting them on Thursday night. Melbourne will be boosted by the return of Kiwis halfback Jahrome Hughes from suspension. 

Acknowledgement of Country

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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