Melbourne Storm breeze past Cowboys with convincing win


The Melbourne Storm have posted a convincing 36-20 win over North Queensland at Sunshine Coast Stadium to continue their NRL finals tune-up.

The Storm kept a grip on second place on the ladder — sitting four points clear of the Sydney Roosters — and extended their record against the Cowboys to 11 straight wins, while they also maintained their unbeaten record at their adopted home ground.

They set up the victory with a big first half, racing to a 24-4 lead at the break.

But it was North Queensland who got off to the better start when young winger Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow ran onto a grubber by Esan Marsters, which caused some confusion in the Storm defence.

The 4-0 lead soon evaporated, however, when Cowboys firebrand Josh McGuire was sent to the sin-bin in the seventh minute for « verbal dissent », having given referee Grant Atkins a foul-mouthed spray after he was tackled.

While McGuire was off the field, both Nelson Asofa-Solomona and Tino Faasuamaleaui crashed through the middle for converted tries, and the Storm established a 12-4 lead.

Winger Josh Addo-Carr showed a clean pair of heels and five-eighth Cameron Munster crossed either side of half-time to make it 26 points and it was effectively game-over after 45 minutes.

To the Cowboys’ credit, they rallied in the second half to at least make a fist of the contest.

Marsters scooted through a big hole and outpaced Storm winger Suliasi Vunivalu for a 40-metre try, while ex-Melbourne playmaker Scott Drinkwater put up a pinpoint kick for Kyle Feldt to outleap Addo-Carr.

But the Storm then ended any hope of an unlikely upset when Jahrome Hughes added their sixth try of the match in the 67th minute

This service may include material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN and the BBC World Service which is copyright and cannot be reproduced.

AEST = Australian Eastern Standard Time which is 10 hours ahead of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time)


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