Matt Attard previews the round four clash between the Storm and the Bulldogs. Here’s what we have to look forward to.
Melbourne Storm Vs Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs
Venue: AAMI Park
Date: Sunday April 3, 4:05pm
MATCHDAY TEAM NEWS
Related: NRL Team List TuesdayEmbed from Getty Images
Storm: 1. Ryan Papenhuyzen 2. Dean Ieremia 3. Reimis Smith 4. Justin Olam 5. Xavier Coates 6. Cameron Munster 7. Jahrome Hughes 8. Jesse Bromwich 9. Harry Grant 10. Nelson Asofa-Solomona 11. Felise Kaufusi 12. Kenny Bromwich 13. Josh King 14. Brandon Smith 15. Alec MacDonald 16. Trent Loiero 17. Tepai Moeroa 18. Chris Lewis 19. Nick Meaney 20. Jayden Nikorima 21. William Warbrick 22. Marion Seve 23. Tyran Wishart 24. Sualauvi FaalogoEmbed from Getty Images
Bulldogs: 1. Matt Dufty 2. Braidon Burns 3. Aaron Schoupp 4. Brent Naden 5. Josh Addo-Carr 6. Matt Burton 7. Brandon Wakeham 8. Luke Thompson 9. Jeremy Marshall-King 10. Paul Vaughan 11. Corey Waddell 12. Tevita Pangai Junior 13. Josh Jackson 14. Bailey Biondi-Odo 15. Chris Patolo 16. Max King 17. Ava Seumanufagai 19. Reece Hoffman 20. Jake Averillo 21. Joe Stimson 22. Kyle Flanagan 23. Jayden Okunbor 24. Josh Cook 25. Jackson Topine
Referee: Adam Gee
Melbourne is staring down the barrel of two straight losses after going down in a thriller last weekend. That doesn’t happen often, and they’ll be primed against a Bulldogs outfit who have been much improved.
Ryan Papenhuyzen is warming up nicely and has improved each week, running for more than 200 metres against the Eels. Their edges are proving deadly again and that is where the danger lies for the Bulldogs.
This season the Bulldogs have played their football in mostly trying conditions, including rounds one and three in horrendous rain. Their defence has been excellent except for their flanks, which have leaked the majority of tries in 2022.
Justin Olam, Xavier Coates, former Bulldog Reimis Smith and Dean Ieremia will be looking to exploit that on Sunday – and we all know how deadly their spine can be.
While the Bulldogs will need to be on their guard defensively, their much-maligned attack is showing real signs of promise. Former Storm star Josh Addo-Carr said during the week that the Bulldogs attack feels like it’s within a whisker of clicking. Fans will be hoping that’s the case against the NRL heavyweights on Sunday.
Halfback Brandon Wakeham will step into the number seven jersey again after an impressive performance last week, following two starring roles in reserve grade. If he can complement Matt Burton and the Bulldogs forwards continues to do their job it will go a long way to unlocking more points for the blue and white.Embed from Getty Images
Melbourne almost never loses matches back to back, especially at home. However, Josh Addo-Carr doesn’t usually go so long without a try.
In what can only be dubbed the “Josh Addo-Carr Cup”, the former Storm star will be looking to nab his first try as a Bulldog and his first try in five matches.
He’ll be praying his new teammates finally click – the Bulldogs have not won in Melbourne since 2016.
Storm by 10
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