Storm savage disappointing Raiders

The Melbourne Storm have comprehensively defeated a disappointing Canberra Raiders side 36-12 this afternoon at AAMI Park.

The Storm opened the scoring in the 15th minute through their trademark second-man play. Cooper Cronk linked up with Cam Smith who gave Billy Slater the chance to loft the pass to Dane Nielsen who dived over in the corner. Over the course of the next few minutes, the Storm had several chances to extend their lead, but the Raiders defence held firm and they were rewarded for their defence when Drury Low scored their first try of the afternoon in the 22nd minute. Travis Waddell darted out of dummy half and although was dragged down short of the line, threw the pass to Jarrod Croker who then found Low to cross in the corner. The Storm then failed to complete several sets of six in the lead-up to halftime, but then took advantage of some messy Canberra play in the 34th minute. Cronk's kick on the fifth tackle forced the Raiders to work the ball off their own line, but winger Daniel Vidot threw a pass which was knocked on by Dane Tilse. Storm winger Justin O'Neill scooped up the loose ball to dive over under the posts and extend the Storm's lead to 8 points. Canberra centre Jarrod Croker closed the gap to a converted try at halftime with a penalty goal after Cooper Cronk was ruled to have taken Joel Monaghan out as he chased a Terry Campese kick.

The Storm extended their lead in the 45th minute when Justin O'Neill scored a try after Greg Inglis was ruled to have not knocked a Ryan Hoffman pass which bounced off his chest as he supported the second-rower. Any doubt about a Raiders revival was snuffed out in the 51st minute when Inglis scored in the corner, racing onto a perfect Billy Slater pass which lobbed over the top of Raiders' winger Daniel Vidot's head. Dane Nielsen scored his second try of the afternoon in the 59th minute when he latched onto a perfectly weighted Cooper Cronk cross-field kick. As the Storm attempted to throw the ball around and play some enterprising play, Billy Slater took full advantage of Joel Monaghan not securing the ball properly in the in-goal. Slater grubber kicked and as Monaghan picked the ball up, the Queensland fullback stole the ball one-on-one and scored the try. The final 10 minutes of the match was playing in driving rain, hail and a mini-cyclone also hit AAMI Park. Todd Lowrie registered the Storm's final try of the afternoon when he toed through a loose pass from the Raiders and won the race to the ball. Fortunately for the Raiders, Jarrod Croker scored their second try, swooping on a Cooper Cronk pass to Greg Inglis which sailed over the centres head, giving Croker a 25-metre passage to the tryline.

Next week, the Raiders tackle the high-flying Panthers in Canberra on Monday night, while the Storm take on the Sea Eagles on Saturday night.

Match Details
Melbourne Storm 36 defeated Canberra Raiders 12
National Rugby League - NRL - Round 21 - Sunday August 1, 2010 2:00pm
Venue: AAMI Park
Referee: Ben Cummins and Phil Haines
Video Referee: Tim Mander
Touch Judges: Steve Chiddy and Adam Reid
Crowd: 9,112
Halftime: Melbourne Storm 12 Canberra Raiders 6 players of the match:
3 Points - Cameron Smith (4 Conversions)
2 Points - Justin O'Neill (2 Tries)
1 Point - Kevin Proctor

Tries: Todd Lowrie, Greg Inglis, Billy Slater, Dane Nielsen (2), Justin O'Neill (2)
Conversions: Greg Inglis (0/1), Cameron Smith (4/5), Aiden Tolman (0/1)

Tries: Jarrod Croker, Drury Low
Conversions: Jarrod Croker (1/2)
Penalty Goals: Jarrod Croker (1/1) Live Commentary NRL Sunday comes to you live from AAMI Park in Melbourne for this afternoon's round 20 encounter between the Melbourne Storm and the Canberra Raiders.

In team news, for the Raiders, Josh Dugan out with Joel Monaghan switching to fullback. Drury Low will now come onto the wing. Sam Mataora is out with Glenn Buttriss taking his place on the bench.

For the Storm, Matt Duffie has been ruled out and he will be replaced by Chase Stanley. Jeff Lima replaces Brett White in the run-on side and Sione Kite moves onto bench.

Kick off will be a little after 2pm. Join LeagueUnlimited for all the live action then.
In the Toyota Cup curtain-raiser, the Raiders ran out emphatic victors over the Storm 50-22.
1 min: Terry Campese gets us underway here this afternoon. The Raiders will defend the southern end of AAMI Park.
1 min: Cameron Smith kicks out of acting half for a 40/20 and misses out by half a metre!
2 min: The Raiders have dropped the ball on tackle two and the Storm will go on the attack early here.
3 min: Smith trickles a grubber into the Raiders in-goal, but the kick has too much on it and it goes over the deadball line. Raiders 20m restart.
4 min: The Storm are away down the eastern touchline, but the flick pass from Inglis to O'Neill is ruled to have travelled forward and the Raiders will feed a scrum.
6 min: PENALTY Raiders. Smith penalised for hanging around too long in the ruck.
6 min: The Raiders switch the ball from the left hand side of the field, but Monaghan's pass to Vidot has been put down by the winger. Melbourne will feed a scrum and work the ball off their own line.
8 min: Finch charges the ball down and the Storm will again go on the attack.
9 min: Cronk's crossfield kick towards Inglis sails over the deadball line on the full and the Raiders have a free 20m.
11 min: The Storm show some enterprising play and Inglis attempts to put a grubber kick in behind the line, which has missed his foot and referee Cummins rules knock-on.
12 min: The Raiders sweep the ball to their left hand side, but some great cover defence from Finch defuses the situation. Campese's kick has been taken on the full in the in-goal. 20m restart.
15 min: PENALTY Storm. Raiders found offside.
15 min: TRY
TRY Melbourne Storm
Scored by Dane Nielsen. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful.
The Storm open the scoring with a beautifully constructed play. Several second-man plays involves Smith, Cronk and Slater, before Slater's pass found Nielsen on the outside to dive over in the corner.
Melbourne Storm 6-0
18 min: Knock on Storm. Lima has attempted to milk the penalty, but Cummins has ruled a knock-on and the Raiders get a chance to hit straight back.
19 min: The Raiders have shown some great play, completed their set of six and McCrone dribbles a kick into the in-goal which is batted dead by Slater.
21 min: The Raiders have been held up after throwing the ball around in a similar way to how the Storm scored their first try, but the Storm's scrambling defence has held them out.
22 min: TRY
TRY Canberra Raiders
Scored by Drury Low. Conversion attempt by Jarrod Croker unsuccessful.
Low scores the Raiders first try! Waddell darted out of dummy half, before passing to Croker, who found Low to dive over in the corner.
Melbourne Storm 6-4
25 min: PENALTY Storm. Raiders penalised for offside.
26 min: Knock on Storm. Cronk's bullet-like pass has been knocked into the Raiders defence by Hoffman and Canberra will feed a scrum 10m short of halfway.
28 min: Knock-on Raiders. Vidot has knocked Cronk's kick on and then been penalised for dissent. The Storm now go on the attack.
29 min: The Raiders defence again holds firm and repels the Storm once more.
30 min: PENALTY Raiders. Melbourne inside the 10 from the tap restart.
30 min: Waddell's pass from the tap-kick has been ruled forward and the Storm feed a scrum 40m out from the Raiders line.
31 min: Inglis knocks-on from Cronk's pass.
32 min: Campese's kick into the in-goal trickles over the deadball line.
32 min: Hoffman now knocks-on working the ball off his own line, giving the Raiders another opportunity to score points.
33 min: Campese now knocks the ball on as he took the Storm defence on.
34 min: TRY
TRY Melbourne Storm
Scored by Justin O?Neill. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful.
O'Neill swoops on a terrible Canberra mistake! The Storm kicked deep into the Raiders territory and as the Raiders attempted to work the ball off their own line, Vidot passed to Tilse, who knocked the ball on and O'Neill was on the spot to pick up the loose ball and dive over under the posts.
Melbourne Storm 12-4
37 min: PENALTY Storm. Raiders penalised for taking too long getting off the tackled player.
38 min: PENALTY Storm. Monaghan interferes in the play-the-ball.
38 min: Hoffman throws the ball out the back and the Raiders gleefully accept the ball and work up-field.
39 min: PENALTY Raiders. Storm pick up the tackled player after referee calls held.
40 min: PENALTY Raiders. Cronk ruled to have taken out the chasers after Campese put a cross-field kick looking for Monaghan.
PENALTY GOAL Canberra Raiders
Penalty goal attempt by Jarrod Croker successful.
Croker closes the gap to just a converted try at halftime.
Melbourne Storm 12-6
40 min: The second half is underway here at AAMI Park. Cameron Smith gets us underway and the Raiders have first use of the ball.
41 min: Campese is tackled on the fifth and hasn't gotten a kick away and the Storm now go into Raiders territory.
43 min: PENALTY Storm. Mogg hits O'Neill with a careless high tackle.
44 min: VIDEO REFEREE: Possible Storm try.
45 min: TRY
TRY Melbourne Storm
Scored by Justin O?Neill. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful.
Justin O'Neill scores one of the most bizarre tries you will ever see. Hoffman got a pass around the corner which has hit Inglis in the chest, before bouncing forward, but is ruled to not have knocked the ball on, before passing to O'Neill who had a saloon passage to the tryline.
Melbourne Storm 18-6
47 min: Cronk knocks the kick-off on and gives the Raiders a chance to hit straight back.
48 min: Croker is held up by some scrambling defence from the Storm.
49 min: Forward pass Raiders. As the Raiders try to move the ball upfield, away from their goal-line, Monaghan delivers a forward pass. The Storm go on the attack again.
51 min: TRY
TRY Melbourne Storm
Scored by Greg Inglis. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith unsuccessful.
Inglis scores a great Melbourne try! Smith, Cronk, Finch and Slater all work together before Slater lobs a pass over the head of Vidot into the arms of Inglis who scores in the corner and perhaps finishes Canberra's season for 2010.
Melbourne Storm 22-6
55 min: PENALTY Storm. Inglis lifted into a dangerous position.
57 min: Goal-line dropout. Vidot has accidentally knocked the ball over the deadball line as he attempted to shadow the ball over the deadball line.
59 min: TRY
TRY Melbourne Storm
Scored by Dane Nielsen. Conversion attempt by Cameron Smith successful.
Nielsen scores his second try of the afternoon, leaping high and pulling in a perfectly weighted kick from Cooper Cronk, after O'Neill was dragged down half a metre short of the line on the other side of the field.
Melbourne Storm 28-6
64 min: Knock-on Raiders. Shillington attempts to pick up the loose ball, but knocks it on.
65 min: Croker knocks the ball on as the Raiders throw the ball around and start to play catch up football.
67 min: VIDEO REFEREE: Possible Storm try.
67 min: VIDEO REFEREE: Possible Storm try.
67 min: TRY
TRY Melbourne Storm
Scored by Billy Slater. Conversion attempt by Greg Inglis unsuccessful.
Slater scores another bizarre try here at AAMI Park this afternoon! Slater put the grubber kick into the in-goal, chased his own kick and then stole the ball off Monaghan one-on-one to score his first try today.
Melbourne Storm 32-6
69 min: Knock on Storm. Proctor knocks the ball on while attempting to play the ball as what looks like a mini-cyclone, along with torrential rain and hail hits AAMI Park!
71 min: TRY
TRY Canberra Raiders
Scored by Jarrod Croker. Conversion attempt by Jarrod Croker successful.
Croker swoops on a loose pass from Cronk! Cronk's pass sailed over the head of Inglis, as the wind took the ball away from him, before Croker raced 25m to score the try alongside the posts.
Melbourne Storm 32-12
73 min: Knock-on Raiders. Picker attempts to play the ball quickly and loses control.
75 min: Finch grubbers into the in-goal which is scooped up by Vidot, but Inglis tackles him over the deadball line.
75 min: PENALTY Storm. Campese kicks out on the full from the dropout.
76 min: Tolman knocks the ball on.
77 min: VIDEO REFEREE: Possible Storm try.
77 min: TRY
TRY Melbourne Storm
Scored by Todd Lowrie. Conversion attempt by Aiden Tolman unsuccessful.
Todd Lowrie scores his first try of the year, toeing through a loose ball and winning the race to the ball in the in-goal.
Melbourne Storm 36-12
79 min: Monaghan knocks Campese's kick on while attempting to ground the ball.
80 min: Fulltime here at AAMI Park where the Melbourne Storm have defeated the Canberra Raiders 36-12.

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