There is just something about Anzac Day at AAMI Park, against the New Zealand Warriors that the Melbourne Storm love.
On the eleventh Anzac Day meeting between the two sides, Storm once again outscored the Warriors to secure a 42-20 win.
The win now brings Storm to eight Anzac Day match successes. The Warriors sit on two wins since the regular fixture began back in 2009. The inaugural Anzac Day match recorded the only draw in the 11 meetings.
The only time the two sides haven’t met for the commemorative match since its player, was in 2015, where Storm hosted Manly Warringah. The Storm were handed a two-point loss on the day, but bounced-backed in 2016, handing the Warriors one of their biggest Anzac Day losses.
The Warriors 22-point defeat is now the fourth-largest deficit handed to them by Storm on Anzac Day. Storm recorded their biggest win in 2016 where they kept the Warriors scoreless, 42-0. In 2018, Storm celebrated a 40-point win, 50-10, while in 2010, Storm handed the Warriors a 34-point defeat, 40-6.
Storm now sit on an accumulated 305 points scored on the April meeting, to the Warriors 142. That’s a whole 163-point difference.
The Warriors were forced a player short when Josh Curran was sin-binned for a late hit on George Jennings, that left the Storm’s winger out with concussion. The team from across the trans-Tasman also travelled over without Tohu Harris and Peta Hiku due to injuries.
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But in comparison, along with Jennings, Storm were without their number one Ryan Papenhuyzen. In 2021, Papenhuyzen has already scored eight tries and 24 goals for his side this year, despite being a fullback.
Despite the loss, there were promising signs from the Warriors debutant Reece Walsh, who played the number one position.
“You could see Reece’s talent there today, he’s obviously a very talented kid,” Warriors coach Nathan Brown said at the post-match press conference.
“He’s got speed… he’s got a lot of work to do, obviously he’s only young. Any player to have three try assists against Melbourne Storm is good, let alone on your debut when you’re 18.”
Adding to the Warrior’s honourable mentions was veteran Ken Maumalo, who crossed twice in the final minutes to score a hat-trick. It was all but too late though for his side though which had little time to close the margin.