There’s just one factor Melbourne Storm enforcer Nelson Asofa-Solomona has on his thoughts forward of Friday’s preliminary remaining showdown with Penrith and that’s creating “chaos” for the reigning premiers to cope with.
Everyone on the Storm was smarting after the opening finals shutout towards the Brisbane Broncos, none extra so than frontman Asofa-Solomona who felt his group was “bullied” within the 26-0 loss.
A response got here in final Friday’s slender, last-gasp win over the Roosters to arrange the conflict with Penrith for a spot within the grand remaining, however Melbourne nonetheless wasn’t at its greatest.
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It’s been a trait of Storm’s season, which has been “inconsistent” in line with the enormous prop however supplied sufficient wins to make an eighth preliminary remaining prior to now 9 seasons, a outstanding achievement given the challenges Storm has confronted in 2023.
Those challenges, which embrace the lack of star fullback Ryan Papenhuyzen, in addition to Penrith’s two wins over Melbourne this yr, are sufficient to make Storm rank outsiders for Friday’s conflict in Sydney.
But as he stares down the problem of taking up the Panthers’ premiership-winning huge males Spencer Leniu and James Fisher-Harris, Asofa-Solomona has made it clear what he plans to carry to the must-win contest.
“Just trying to cause chaos,” he stated, declaring that taking part in in huge finals was a key purpose why he baulked at a shift to rugby union to re-sign with Storm.
“When you look at successful teams, obviously they have a system and you have to stick to that system. You’ve got to trust the game plan. And that’s why Penrith has done so well all year and that’s why they’re so successful is because they complete well, they kick into corners and then they just suffocate you.
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“That’s what we try to do also.
“But you know, there’s times when we take charge in the middle and we take over, trying to get quick play the balls, trying to create chaos around the ruck.
“That’s when we can pull the trigger. Getting down, getting up playing the ball as fast as you can and then you know whether the hookers get out or whether the boys are flooding that ruck area, getting over the advantage line and just taking metres, that’s how you win games.”
The lack of punch in Melbourne’s pack has been put underneath the highlight in latest weeks with Asofa-Solomona rotating by beginning each on the bottom and on the bench, a choice he leaves as much as coach Craig Bellamy.
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Asofa-Solomona began towards the Roosters to make the “impact” his group wanted and, regardless of extra being on the road in finals, isn’t altering his method or asking for extra time on subject to extend that impression.
“My philosophy is quantity over quantity,” he stated.
“So I’m not trying to not trying to cut corners, I’m not trying to find ways to play longer. I just go as hard as I can.
“And I guess when it’s time to get someone else on, then he (Bellamy) does that. So it’s not about trying to stay out there as long as I can. It’s about trying to have quality when I’m out there.”
Success is ingrained at Storm and whereas Melbourne are underdogs this Friday, Asofa-Solomona stated the “stars had aligned” to provide him and his group an opportunity to do one thing particular.
“A big reason why I signed is because I know what this team can do. I know what they’re capable of,” he stated.
“I trust the system and I love the club.
“You look for these moments, you look for these big occasions and I feel like we’re made for this game. It’s all like this all the stars have aligned for this game.”
Source web site: www.foxsports.com.au