NRL Grand Final: Melbourne Storm beat North Queensland Cowboys

Francis Osborne
October 2, 2017

It will be broadcast live on Channel 9.

The Cowboys started the second period strongly and reduced their deficit through Te Maire Martin, but the Storm - last year's runners-up - soon wrapped up the game through Dale Finucane and Curtis Scott.

One more, in the form of the North Queensland Cowboys, proved to be just too much of a stretch.

"Unfortunately for CQ right now great rugby league players don't come here to play, they have to leave here to play".

Now 34, Slater showed no signs of old age in an up-tempo grand final, continually catching the Cowboys out with quick restarts and probing runs. The Bega-born prop had previously lost three grand finals, but it looked like that Storm magic dust had finally seeped into his skin.

After a stalemate that stretched almost 20 minutes, the Storm took control of the first half, with Josh Addo-Carr's stunning opener setting the tone for the evening.

Addo-Carr and his partner in crime, Suliasi Vunivalu, who between them have become the most prolific try-scoring wing partnership in 60 years, will tell you they have simply put the finishing touches on as they have run in a combined 46 tries this season.

Cameron Smith because duh, he's Cameron Smith.

Slater is my pick for Man of the Match. They get behind you.

Everyone else did - not just once, not just twice, but three times in a row, and the Cowboys just kept doing it.

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There isn't a metric category which can measure it, but confidence is so important in modern-day rugby league, and North Queensland have plenty of it.

That was as good as it got for the Cowboys though as an unstoppable Storm outfit exploded late in similar fashion to that in which they put Brisbane to the sword a week earlier.

They would keep fighting, of course, such is the narrative of the Cowboys.

The Cowboys need to be at their best to grind the game down and have to take every opportunity for a chance of victory.

All the Cowboys are operating at peak capacity and I will fight you if you say otherwise. The two are fast becoming North Queensland legends, if they weren't already.

After the preliminary final, Roosters coach Trent Robinson declared that Morgan is the best player in the world right now, and that is hard to dispute. If North Queensland wins, one of these two is nearly guaranteed the medal.

"They've been the underdog this whole time and made it this far". They are tenacious, gutsy and will never surrender.

But the minor premiers were not exactly at their free-flowing best and it was a scrappy encounter, with three of Melbourne's four tries coming in the final 20 minutes. No team has won the comp from eighth spot - where the Cowboys finished - but there's a first time for everything.

This was the Storm's sixth grand final in the last decade. "Basically what we planned, we did it for 80 minutes".

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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