NRL match preview: Melbourne Storm vs Sydney Roosters

Date:Sunday, June 8 2014
Venue:AAMI Park

Storm: 1.Cameron Munster 2.Sisa Waqa 3.William Chambers 4.Kurt Mann 5.Young Tonumaipea 6.Tohu Harris
7.Ben Roberts 8.Jesse Bromwich 9.Cameron Smith (c) 10.Bryan Norrie 11.Kevin Proctor 12.Ryan Hoffman
13.Ryan Hinchcliffe Interchange: 14.Kenny Bromwich 15.Mitch Garbutt 16.Junior Moors 17.George Rose

Roosters: 1.Anthony Minichiello 2.Daniel Tupou 3.Michael Jennings 4.Shaun Kenny-Dowall 5.Roger Tuivasa-Sheck 6.James Maloney 7.Mitchell Pearce 8.Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 9.Jake Friend 10.Sam Moa
11.Aidan Guerra 12.Sonny Bill Williams 13.Frank-Paul Nuuausala Interchange: 14.Dylan Napa 15.Isaac Liu 16.Mitchell Aubusson 17.Rémi Casty 18.Willis Meehan

The Melbourne Storm struggled in round 12 without superstars Billy Slater and Cooper Cronk, and it doesn’t get any easier, when they host an in-form Sydney Roosters side at AAMI Park, Melbourne on Sunday Afternoon.

The Storm side is starting to resemble a bits and pieces outfit with names like Munster, Mann and Garbutt making an appearance. They still boast skipper Cameron Smith who struggled through last weekend’s 22-0 loss against the North Queensland Cowboys, but are somewhat lacking in the key positions of fullback and half back. While Tohu Harris has been named at five eighth, there is a chance Ben Hampton may come into the team after serving his lengthy suspension for the unfortunate tackle on Alex McKinnon.

The Roosters have no such issues and have named the same 17 that accounted for the Canberra Raiders last week, adding youngster Willis Meehan onto the bench as 18th man.

There will be plenty of fireworks when Kiwi heavyweights Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and Jesse Bromwich come together and whoever wins this individual match up will go a long way towards deciding the outcome.

Put simply, players of the calibre of Slater and Cronk are irreplaceable and the Storm will continue to struggle until at least Slater is back. They are trying hard, but are lacking the polish that these two bring to the table and the Roosters are in excellent form.

Roosters by 16.

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