The Mind games and Melbourne Storm.

I am as filthy as the next person about last nights performance. We had excuses, we had rough calls, we were probably fatigued from the heavy game the week before. Saints had things to play for, emotions were driving them.  All of those things are factors. Good teams overcome factors and good teams have plans for situations. When you dont have a plan to react to adversity - you rely on muscle memory and unfortunately our muscle memory is our old poor attack, dropped ball, confusion in the direction of our sets and finally disbelief. It is a rot that sets in and if the people steering the ship get it , very hard to rectify it. 

The Importance of a Plan B

I recently heard a Podcast between a melbourne Journalist called Mark Howard and Storm Coach Craig Bellamy.  Have a listen. One thing that hit home to me was Bellamy said he started preparing for the next game 30 minutes after the last game.  He wasnt concerned with how the Storm were going to score tries or how they were going to attack the opposition. He wanted to know how they were going to defend the opposition.  Further, he looked at the tries scored.  He didnt look at the guy that put the ball down or how flashy it was. That wasnt his concern. He looked at the plays, minutes that led to the try. In other words what led to the try and who was responsible. As you know , for the Sivo try in the corner or BLAKE runaway - something happened to make this.  Bellamy looks at the players that created that chain of events. Who did something that created the opportunity or what did they do that made his defenders react differently outside their systems. For example SIVO scoring is the last link. But often it will be a Brown run through the channel followed by a Junior run and ofload and then Gutho out the back. Bellamy will target the Brown running game to disrupt the ability for Junior to run off that momentum and what transpires next.   Attack wise Bellamy has the assistants working at the shape to create the tries.

This is what really worries me about next week.  SIVO and FERGO start our sets. We all know our wingers and Centres are hit and miss. SIVO is really running blind at the moment. Both are doing the job but not great at the moment. But Nathan Brown is our key in attack. He creates the momentum with his energy. Our Props are doing great and usually getting us to the part of the field for a Kick or one shot at them.  Here is where we fall down. We constantly have this 20-30 metre pass that goes back to either MOSES or BROWN.  We are then crowding our backs or edge runners. Defenders can then jam in and this creates pressure on MOSES who will either kick it or bring it back inside to usually a running BROWN.  If they reduced this IMO to even half that distance and played the halves a bit flatter they will create a slightly staggered defence line.  Options for GUTHO through the middle or edge runners.  Bellamy is going to really upset Nathan BROWN and have numbers on him.  That will reduce our momentum. We need Plan B.   I think you have to try and go through the STORM not around them.  WE actually have the defence to hold them.  We just need to score points and play smarter. 

In my opinion,  we play direct.  We play fast. We go through them and we need to not sway from this.  KIck to corners so PAPY isnt getting clean air balls. He is a lean fullback so you can man handle him. But if he gets a flyer with the ball in the air, we are chasing our tails.They then bring Addo-Carr and co in and with that speed usually attract six again re starts.  Have a Plan to combat Brandon SMITH. He is massive for them. Changes their tempo every game. STORM will expect us to be mentally weak as that is unfortunately our revert to status. We will only get into the contest by coming at them in the middle and playing high percentages. 

TOUGH but winnable.  

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  • Well said PT. It certsinly makes a lot of sense. I hope we have something in the bag for next week, or it will get very ugly.

  • For starters moses needs to take the line on more.He is to predictable plays to much side to side always turning the ball inside and every team knows this.Waqa blake needs to lift in defence as does sivo with his defencing reads.I would like to see dylan brown run this team instead of moses.This is defently a different team to the one that played against canberra.I'm not sure whats happened since then but it obviously stands out we are in a slump.Lets hope next week is the start of our premiership charge,We will defintley know where we stand after thursday night.

  • Don't know what is going on with Sivo. There was an opportunity for a big run last night and he just stopped and took the tackle. Semi would have run the length of the field in that instance. Fergo is definately not having the impact anymore either.

    Not sure who has been in Dylan Browns ear either. He is taking on the line too much. He had a great knack of slotting people into holes, but not how he just ducks his head to try and break the line.

    That whole backline movement of Gutho to the left side has been dismantled. It was alluded to by Cronk a few weeks back on how to stop it and since then we have not really scored any points. A bloodbath is on the cards for next week, and it's probably a reality check the players need.

    • Sivos been having nightmares about Storm high bombs all week. He won’t catch one. Jennings is day dreaming about his return to Penrith as a trainer when he retires. Waq-daddy needs to kick his hair stylist out of the bubble, shave the mop and find some mongrel. These 3 are dragging the rest of the team down. 

  • Hopefully Johns is at training this week and explaining how you beat Melbourne. He always says you have to go through them but you can't stay in the middle. They love that. They hate short passes to the edge where the edge backrower targets the Melbourne half. If we continue playing with the same tactics Melbourne will easily deal with our attack.

  • I'll say this.

    We will improve in intensity but even this lift in intensity will only by good for 60 - we can't play 80mins footy under this guy.

    Melbourne by 14.

    • Thanku 

  • Great analysis. 

    On current form, we will get massacred next week. 

  • I haven't read any blogs but gee I hope we get a good draw in the semis and win. The Comp, fuk you never know

  • I agree totally Paul with our halves standing to wide when receiving the ball in attacking positions. This deep 20-30 pass is allowing the defensive team too much time and we are running out of room on our edges.Need more short balls and creative plays turning balls inside and out

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