NRL 2022, Melbourne Storm v Gold Coast Titans Matchday 21 match preview, squad rosters, ins and outs, updates

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The Storm got back on track with a win over the Warriors and will be looking to gain momentum against a struggling Titans side that have lost nine in a row.

A top-four finish will be front and center for Melbourne as they face a tough home run with games against the Panthers, Broncos, Roosters and Eels after this weekend.

The Titans are here to restore pride after a horror season and if they want to shake the Storm’s cage much will depend on David Fifita and Tino Fa’asuamaleaui laying the groundwork for AJ Brimson and Jayden Campbell to work. .

A trip to AAMI Park is a daunting prospect at the best of times, but for an unconfident team teetering toward a second wooden spoon in four years, it will take considerable effort to avoid a blowout.

The summary

Team News

Storm: Hooker Brandon Smith returns from suspension in a boost for Craig Bellamy, but fullback Nick Meaney appears to be in doubt after suffering a shoulder injury and concussion in a heavy crash against the Warriors. Winger David Nofoaluma has arrived on loan from the Wests Tigers and could find himself straight into the starting squad.

Titans: Jayden Campbell provided plenty of impact during a 43-minute stint on the bench against the Raiders and could find himself in the starting squad.

Matching Keys

Felise Kaufusi vs. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui: Two hard-headed Maroons who leave nothing in the tank every time they enter the field. After spending time in the United States with his ailing father, Kaufusi has returned with 97 tackles and 257 running yards over the past three matches. The big game specialist will continue to build for the final and will be ready to explode in September. Tino’s Titans won’t be there when the whips crack but the young skipper did everything he could to make sure they didn’t get the wooden spoon back, running 153 yards a game and breaking 42 tackles so far this season.

Stat Attack

The Storm led the NRL in fictitious half runs with 268, clear of the Bulldogs in second place with 223. Harry Grant and Brandon Smith’s 1-2 punch out of the fictitious half wiped out many defensive lines in 2022 and they are reunited on Friday following Smith’s three-game suspension for contrary conduct.

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