Jeff Dickinson-Fox reviews the campaign which saw Melbourne Storm crowned premiers in 2017.
5 days ago
Storm halfback Matt Orford believes Melbourne is a better side than recent form suggests.
Orford says Saturday's loss to the Brisbane Broncos highlighted the need for the Storm to work together as a group and adopt a stronger sense of accountability.
The 24-year-old playmaker is positive Melbourne can still make this year's finals despite slipping out of the top eight this week.
“I think our effort level is just not where it should be at the moment, there was some effort there (against Brisbane) at different stages of the game but we're a much better team than that,” Orford explained.
“We can't totally dismiss the chance that we can still make the semi finals so we've just got to concentrate on the next five games.
“We are just not working together as a side as well as what we should be. In attack and defence you can take things upon yourself to help the guy next to you and I don't think we're doing enough in that area.”
“It comes down to being a team and making the right decisions as a group.”
Orford believes any issues surrounding the club are quickly forgotten when taking the field of a Saturday afternoon. He also believes the players themselves should be held responsible for their performance.
“Everybody's got to be accountable and it has been a distracting season at times but in saying that we're big enough and old enough to know that we've got to get out there and win matches,” Orford said.
“The only way to do that is to take that responsibility on yourself and turn up week in week out and play as a side.
“There's no turmoil in the camp at all…there's only so much they (coaching staff) can do out there on the training paddock until it comes down to ourselves - as soon as we get to the game it's pretty much up to ourselves, they can't play the game for us.”
As the Storm build up to this Saturday's match against the North Queensland Cowboys at Dairy Farmers Stadium, injuries to Robbie Ross (hamstring tightness), Rodney Howe (possible fractured left hand) and Junior Langi (groin strain) will be assessed as the week progresses.
STORM TRAINING THIS WEEK: Wednesday: Olympic Park (10am) Thursday: Olympic Park (10am) Friday: North Queensland (4pm)
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James Avery: Phone (03) 9421 3222 Mobile: 0411 623 024 [email protected]