The Melbourne Storm admits that they are trying to act normal as they prepare for their first round 2 NRL match amidst virus outbreak.
The squad will be travelling in a 48-seater NRL flight on Saturday afternoon to play against Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks at Netstrata Jubilee Stadium in Sydney.
The squad plans to go on with their regular routine and spend time in a specially created lounge at Jubilee stadium. However, Storm coach Craig Bellamy admitted that it would be difficult for the team to adjust to their new travel schedule while taking safety preventive measures.
‘We’re trying to make it as normal as possible but it will be different. We’re not travelling today (Friday) and we’re coming back straight after the game but we need to adjust our routines and make it work’, Bellamy said.
‘At the end of the day we’ll be at the ground two hours before and we’re playing and that doesn’t change so that will be our mentality’, he added.
Bellamy also stated that the squad is trying to focus on how to win against their fierce rival.
During their previous match with Manly Warringah Sea Eagles, Storm won with a solid 18-4 at Lottoland in Sydney. However, Melbourne winger Suliasi Vunivalu has been fined by NRL’s match review committee after jumping into a tackle knee with Sea Eagles players Curtis Sironen, Daly Cherry-Evans, and Dylan Walker.
As the team prepares for their next match, Bellamy said that his players were on guard against veteran Sharks halves Shaun Johnson and Chad Townsend. He also expressed his delight with the excellent performance of Cameron Munster and Jahrome Hughes.
‘I really liked what Jahrome did. He came up with some big play with those kicks but defensively he was outstanding’, Bellamy said.
‘He made 30 tackles and then came up with a couple of game-breaking plays at the end of the game. That’s a really promising game for us – one game doesn’t make a season but he’s off to a good start’, he added.
On the other hand, it was reported that the mid-year Oceania Cup Test has been delayed due to COVID-19 outbreak.
During an emergency meeting held by the APRLC board, they said that the fixtures scheduled for Auckland on June 20 are not possible even if the restrictions are lifted.