Storm crush Cowboys in NRL Grand Final

Storm crush Cowboys in NRL Grand Final

The Cowboys are going to have to produce their best kick chase game; they can't afford to give these three any room.

And they did it by their big three - Slater, Cronk and Smith - being absolutely brilliant, and by the supporting cast of players feeding off them, and rising to something approaching their level. After all, pundits have long predicted they would meet the Broncos in the Grand Final, but instead the two teams played in the preliminary final and Melbourne absolutely demolished their rivals.

Slater had previously won the medal in 2009 with Storm's win over Parramatta.

The Storm, who finished in first place during the regular season, led 18-0 at halftime. "You work extremely hard for it".

The Cowboys halfback and rampaging lock were spoken about as potential x-factors however had little influence on the game as the Storm comprehensively outplayed the Townsville-based underdogs at ANZ Stadium on Sunday.

Slater capped off his comeback by winning the Clive Churchill medal, scoring a try and having a hand in two others, while Smith and Tohu Harris were also enormous. The best first tryscorer odds you can get for the Storm player is $7. A lovely length-of-the-field effort was finished by Josh Ado-Carr, a player who could run 10.6 for the 100m when he was 16, and a player who the Wests Tigers were unable to get the best out of in season 2016.

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"I honestly didn't know if my body would let me back here and it was the toughest thing I've had to sit through past year and the boys going so close and me being helpless and I wasn't going to let that happen today", Slater said.

If the Cowboys win then Walker said Morgan and Taumalolo will need to have blinders.

That's thanks in large to his powerful 92kg frame, which means Morgan is just as capable of powering through the defensive line as he is of throwing a pinpoint flat ball to send a teammate through a gap. Walker said he expected Craig Bellamy's men to target their attack against a couple of weak points in the Cowboys defence. But this was different.

The Cowboys finally scored after several repeat sets, through Te Maire Martin, who stepped inside Cameron Munster after Michael Morgan's pass. It was as good as it got. So fans were left scratching their heads when the Cowboys won 24-16, and were even more baffled by their huge upset in the preliminary final against the Roosters. Addo-Carr's 74th minute effort was the icing.

Why will the Storm win?

Thirteen of the 17 Cowboys have grand final experience, 12 of which came in 2015, and you can bump that number by one should Matt Scott make a shock comeback.

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