Craig Bellamy was concerned about what he saw Saturday night when Storm was flogged and admitted to making a rare mistake as a coach.
The ruthless North Queensland Cowboys are the real deal in the race for Prime Minister. Not make mistakes.
Despite losing stars Jason Taumalolo and Kyle Feldt to suspected serious knee injuries in the first half, the Cowboys destroyed the Storm 36-6 in front of a sold-out Townsville crowd for six straight wins and sent out an impressive statement. to the rest of the competition.
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The Storm was without several injured stars, including Jahrome Hughes, Ryan Papenhuyzen and Nelson Asofa-Solomona, but they had no excuses in a dismal performance.
The Cowboys had their own massive hurdles to overcome, but they leapt over their opponents with class and power to record their first win over Melbourne since the 2015 preliminary final.
North Queensland full-back Jeremiah Nanai made another emphatic claim for a Maroons jersey with two attempts in the second half as midfielder Chad Townsend took full control of the game.
Leading 12-6 at halftime, the Cowboys scored four tries in 12 minutes with Nanai, box-office winger Murray Taulagi and fullback Scott Drinkwater at the end of a Cowboys blitz.
The Storm played hooker Harry Grant at running back, but the move was a flop in an embarrassing display from Melbourne. The Cowboys’ pack, led by Maroons hopeful Tom Gilbert and a reborn Jordan McLean, dominated their opponents.
Storm coach Craig Bellamy said his players didn’t roll up their sleeves or compete, admitting he may have made a mistake by playing regular hooker Harry Grant at running back in Hughes’ absence.
“Which really disappointed me. It worries me. We beat ourselves up,” she said.
“We had problems at that position (back) last week and we had problems there again. It’s obviously not the best position for (Grant)… we probably got it wrong.”
Cowboys coach Todd Payten said he was “really proud” after his team’s shutout. The Cowboys have now given up just four second-half points in the last six games.
“We are still fighting and there is a lot of care and a lot of resilience in the team right now,” he said.
“It was nice. We had one player left on the bench. Thirty points ahead with twenty minutes to go… that doesn’t happen often.”
Cowboy injury drama
Feldt’s leg twisted under the weight of Brandon Smith and other Storm defenders in the 16th minute and he suffered a high-grade MCL injury that is suspected to keep him out of the State of Origin series for the Maroons. That was bad enough, but when Taumalolo followed it up with another alleged MCL complaint, with Smith involved again, the Cowboys squared off.
“This is terrible news for the Cowboys. Maybe Brandon Smith has to address where he’s attacking the legs,” Fox League’s Corey Parker said at halftime as he broke down the tackles.
Bellamy defended Smith.
“I didn’t see any problem to be honest.”
Payten confirmed the injuries after the game.
“Feldty will be out longer and Jase will be ready for the weekend. I’d be surprised if she turns out well,” she said.
Cowboy on Origin Radar
The loss of Feldt will be a huge blow to his club and the Maroons, but the Cowboys have a genius on the other side in Taulagi.
Taulagi, after scoring a brace and setting up a try the week before with the pass of the century, a half-volley off a pass from Peta Hiku, goose-stepped and hit the ball with his left foot to get the Cowboys going. second stanza. He was the best winger in the park and totally outplayed Melbourne’s Xavier Coates.
“His name will be right in the frame of the Origin selection,” Fox League’s Brent Tate said in a comment.
Cowboys rookie Gilbert, bound for the Dolphins next year, scored a try that highlighted why he is regarded as one of the best young fullbacks in the game. With a short dropout, Gilbert beat four Storm defenders to break into an attempt. Fox League’s Greg Alexander said he reminded him of the one Mark Geyer set up for Royce Simmons in the 1991 grand final.
Gilbert, who ran for 131m and made 31 tough tackles, has an angry gleam in his eye like Gorden Tallis once did.
Originally Posted As ‘I Was Wrong’: Craig Bellamy’s Rare Admission After Storm Was Spanked