Sports Stars, Celebs Join Storm
Launch

A host of Melbourne and Australian sports stars and celebrities will be among the guests tomorrow at Crown Towers when Melbourne Storm launches its 2004 Telstra Premiership campaign from noon.

Now in its seventh season of National Rugby League action, the Storm is looking to build on its return to the finals in 2003 and under one of the league?s brightest new coaches in Craig Bellamy, along with a swag of young guns, the club has high hopes for 2004.

At the launch, Melbourne Storm will announce and present the 2004 squad that will represent Victoria in this year?s NRL competition.

NRL chief executive David Gallop will be guest speaker at the launch, canvassing a number of issues facing the game today. Mr Gallop, along with the entire Storm playing squad, will be available for interviews once the 2004 squad has been announced.

MEDIA OPPORTUNITY

WHAT: Melbourne Storm media/season launch WHERE: Breezes Restaurant, level 3,Crown Towers, 8 Whiteman St Southbank ? on the balcony WHEN: 12-2.00pm, Wednesday March 3

Media should take the hotel lifts to level 3 and make their way to Breezes, situated near the Crown Towers pool area.

TV crews may park at the hotel valet.

Melbourne has retained the majority of its 2003 squad acquiring a blend of experience and youth for the 2004 campaign.

Early season indications are that 2003 young guns Billy Slater and Cameron Smith are set to further establish themselves as two of the hottest young talents in the NRL.

This coupled with the fact that several of the Storm?s experienced big-name players - such as Scott Hill, Robbie Ross and Rodney Howe - are all making successful comebacks from injury, points to a strong season ahead for the 1999 premiers.

Melbourne reinstated itself as one of the toughest road trips in the NRL last year, forging a formidable 9-3 record at Olympic Park (8-0 under lights).

This year Bellamy?s men will be aiming to continue their impressive home record when they meet the Newcastle Knights on Sunday March 21 (2.30pm), in the club?s first game of the year.

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