Full Time
7:35pm Sat July 23, 2022
Round 19 - Accor Stadium, Sydney Olympic Park - Crowd: 11217

Match Overview

Souths recorded just their 6th ever win against the Storm in most emphatic performance. The Storm attack was panicked all game as the enthusiastic Souths defence refused to give them space.

In the very first set of the game, Nelson Asofa-Solomona was put on report for an accidental hit on Cameron Murray's ducking head. Souths received a penalty and marched deep into the Storm half. Lachlan Ilias drifted right late in the set, engaged the edge defenders and then passed to what looked like a casually jogging Keaon Koloamatangi, who strolled through a huge gap and scored a very soft try. Latrell Mitchell converted from out wide.

After Souths went close to scoring again in the 10th minute, Melbourne responded courtesy of a 40/20 kick from Jahrome Hughes. Harry Grant forced a drop out at the end of the set. Mitchell though opted for the short restart and Souths got the ball back.

Three minutes later and a Munster grubber forced another Souths drop out, which Mitchell again kicked short. This time the Storm got the ball back only for Jesse Bromwich to drop it a few plays later.

Back to back set restarts for Souths lead to their next points in the 28th minute, when Mitchell lobbed a cut-out ball to the unmarked Alex Johnston, who dived over to score in the corner. Mitchell failed to convert from the sideline.

Johnston very nearly scored again 4 minutes later, but was put into touch.

With 3 minutes left before halftime, the Storm finally got on the board. From the back of a scrum win on halfway, Melbourne sent the ball to Marion Seve, who stepped infield to straighten his run, bumped through the defenders and then raced away to score. Nick Meaney converted from in front. Souths lead 10-6 at halftime.

Souths crossed six minutes into the second half courtesy of some Mitchell magic. Latrell grubbered into Seve's feet, then reached down to pick it up before getting away a bonkers pass to Johnston who scored yet another try. Mitchell's sideline conversion was waved away.

Three minutes after that, Souths piled more misery on the Storm, when Ilias finished off a lovely piece of play through the middle before sliding to the in-goal and only just getting the ball down for the try. Mitchell converted from in front.

Johnston very nearly scored a genuine try-of-the-year contender in the 54th minute when he toed ahead a Mitchell kick and very nearly grounding the ball just inside the dead ball line.

Souths added more points in the 56th minute when Souths sent the ball to right and caught the Storm rushing defence short, allowing Jaxson Paulo to score out wide. Mitchell failed to convert from the sideline.

Melbourne hit back with a similar try in the 64th minute when Dean Ieremia scored untouched in the corner. Meaney converted from touch to get the Storm back within two converted tries.

Try as they might though, the Storm attack simply could not build any pressure. They plagued themselves with too much poor handling, much of which was caused by the impressive Souths defence who were unrelenting for the entire game.

3. Latrell Mitchell

Mitchell set up tries, was exactly where he needed to be in attack and defence and was the difference between these two sides. And he looked like he was doing it easily.

2. Keaon Koloamatangi

Had a few handling errors, but his hard running combined with very reliable ball playing caused the Storm defence endless headaches.

1. Alex Johnston

Two very good tries capped a good game where he kept his opposite number tryless, great under the highball and always loitering about in support.