4 Oct 2017

Smith named Storm player of the year, Slater to stay on

6:55 am on 4 October 2017

Pipped by teammate Billy Slater for best player in the NRL grand final, Cameron Smith is back in the record books after winning the Melbourne player of the year for the seventh time.

Cameron Smith 2017 NRL champion.

Cameron Smith 2017 NRL champion. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

The Storm, Test and Queensland captain added the award to the Dally M Medal and hooker of the year title he collected last week while he led the side to a grand-final triumph over North Queensland.

Smith collected the gong in front of more than 800 people, who had gathered to celebrate their premiership at the club's end-of-season award night.

A testament to his remarkable durability and consistency, the award comes 13 years after winning his first at the Storm.

Last month, the 34-year-old surpassed Darren Lockyer for most top-grade games played. He also holds the records for most points and most wins in premiership history, most games as a NRL captain, most points as a forward and the first player to kick 1000 premiership goals.

In other awards on the night, Will Chambers was named best back for the first time, and Jesse Bromwich took out his fourth best forward award.

Departing legend Cooper Cronk was named club person of the year, while the Storm also honoured the champion halfback by unveiling the Cooper Cronk medal. This will be awarded annually to the Storm feeder player of the year.

Brodie Croft, who is set to replace Cronk in the line-up next year, became the first to receive the medal.

Meanwhile fullback Billy Slater has confirmed he will play on for the Storm in the 2018 NRL season.

Slater surprised his premiership-winning teammates with the news last night at the Storm's end-of-season awards.

The 34-year-old returned early this season from two shoulder reconstruction's to win the Clive Churchill Medal in the Storm's grand final win on Sunday over North Queensland.

"I can now give you a definitive answer. I've worked out what I want to do next year and that's to play on," Slater said to the cheers of the 800-strong crowd at the awards night.

"The grand final was my priority and, through the finals series, I haven't really given it too much thought.

"It's always been a physical decision for me and my body is feeling quite good and I'm ready to go around for another year."