5 Oct 2009

Bellamy hails sweetest win for Storm

6:42 am on 5 October 2009

Melbourne's coach Craig Bellamy says his side's 23-16 National Rugby League grand final win over Parramatta is his sweetest triumph as the Storm joined the pantheon of great teams with their second premiership in three years.

The Storm withstood a furious fightback for their second win in four straight grand final appearances to confirm their standing alongside the Parramatta sides of the early 1980s and Brisbane sides of the 1990s.

A controversial decision by referee Tony Archer to penalise Eels prop Fuifui Moimoi in the 76th minute for holding down Billy Slater in a tackle when the Storm fullback spilled the ball proved a killer when Parramatta was on a roll after two quick tries.

But Parramatta's coach Daniel Anderson says his side gave given Melbourne too much of a start as the Storm lead 10-0 at ghalf-time and 22-6 after 58 minutes.

Slater was named Clive Churchill Medal winner as he outpointed Parramatta rival Jarryd Hayne, but the award could have gone to any number of players including the Eels Nathan Hindmarsh who made a remarkable 63 tackles.