Melbourne Storm

Warriors weather the Storm in Rotorua

A home side missing several of their most-experienced players scored four tries to three on Saturday against the Storm, comprising personnel from reserve grade and feeder clubs.

Without their premiership-winning first-grade players - who beat Leeds 38-4 on Friday night in the World Club Challenge - Melbourne still put up a decent performance.

They opened the scoring with an exceptional team try finished by Sunshine Coast Falcons winger Matt Sopa-Lowler.

Melbourne Storm predicted Round 1 line-up

Up-and-comer Brodie Croft looks set to beat a host of worthy candidates to the vacant No.7 jersey while returning fan favourite Ryan Hoffman looks a straight swap for Harris. expert Jamie Soward says:

"This could be the year we finally see someone go back-to-back. Everyone will talk about the change from Cooper Cronk to Brodie Croft but you've still got Cameron Smith and Billy Slater, around them guys like Will Chambers and Ryan Hoffman coming back, and they pick up a guy like Sam Kasiano. There's no real weakness in this side.

The club that produced six current Kangaroos

The premiership winning Melbourne Storm quartet of Cameron Smith, Billy Slater, Cooper Cronk and Will Chambers all wore the Devils jersey, as did Broncos duo Josh McGuire and Matt Gillett.

Kangaroos squad member Ben Hunt has also played for Norths.

Billy Slater is coming back

The Clive Churchill Medallist has signed a one-year extension to his Storm contract, meaning he will return for one more time around the sun in 2018.

Melbourne announced the news on their official website on Tuesday night.

"We are delighted that Billy has made the decision to pull on the purple jersey again in 2018," Storm chief executive Dave Donaghy said.

"He has been a champion of this club and NRL for over a decade so it is fantastic for the game as a whole that Billy will be back on the field next year.

Purple haze welcomes Storm champions home

Slater and the Storm players were given a heroes' welcome home after demolishing North Queensland 34-6 to win the NRL grand final in Sydney.

Perfect Storm claim 2017 premiership

The North Queensland Cowboys battled bravely right to the end were barely in the contest right from the outset against a Storm side that were clinical and relentless from the opening whistle in Cronk's final game in purple.

Crafty Croft continues to conquer

Kicking the game-winning field goal in a man-of-the-match performance to guide his side to a stirring 23-22 extra-time win without their Origin stars over a gutsy North Queensland Cowboys, there were no words for Croft and his parents to explain the moment either.

Myles leaves Manly for Melbourne

The Australia international forward has been recruited as cover for Christian Welch, who has been ruled out of the remainder of the 2017 campaign with a knee injury.

Myles, 31, is currently recovering from an elbow problem sustained in the opening State of Origin match but will begin work with his new team immediately.

"I'm ecstatic to be able to join Melbourne Storm for the remainder of the season," he said. 

Bellamy to address cracks in Storm defence

The Storm have now conceded more than 20 points three times this season – all in the past four rounds – after allowing teams to score that many points just twice in 2016.

It could be the wake-up call the side needs before they enter a difficult Origin period without several of their stars.

Bellamy made sure his side learned from their mistakes after the full-time siren as they move ahead for the rest of the season.

Right time to play Storm: James

Coming out of the Representative Round on the back of two straight wins, the Titans only have to travel an hour up the M1 for their 'away' clash with the Storm who have won seven of the nine matches played between the two teams in Melbourne.

Both clubs have been rocked this week by senior players Kevin Proctor and Jesse Bromwich being embroiled in a drugs scandal following New Zealand's Test loss in Canberra on Friday night and will take the field without the pair on Saturday night.