Melbourne stage miraculous late fightback to win at the death

Ryan Hoffman

We have already seen it several times this year, and we witnessed it yet again – with a team coming away with a victory right at the death, courtesy of some do-or-die football.

This time, it was the Sharks who had the win snatched from their jaws, as they saw the Melbourne Storm score two tries in the last 2 minutes, to give the home side a 20-18 win.

It was the Sharks game to lose from the get-go, as they were the dominant side throughout the game, on the back of some uncharacteristic errors and lots of them, from a Storm side who is usually so good at ball control.

The game did see a momentum shift, however, as the Storm fought back in the second half, with back-rower Ryan Hoffman finishing the game with two tries.

Sharks coach Shane Flanagan was a distraught man at the end of the game, as he was happy with the performance overall, yet disappointed with his side’s final five minutes.

“The boys tried their backsides off for 75 minutes … that last five is something I’d like to forget,” he said post-match.

Whilst the Sharks were guaranteed a place in the finals win, lose or draw, captain Paul Gallen believes that the game showed they can slug it out with the form teams.

“The biggest thing for us is that we learn from that,” Gallen said.

“The game goes for 80 minutes not 75, that’s what we need to learn.”

For Storm coach Craig Bellamy, he admitted that he basically gave up hope of winning with 5 minutes to go – and knows his side was lucky to win.

“With five (minutes) to go I basically put my hands up when Sika (Manu) dropped the ball on the tryline, I thought that was it but the players didn’t so that’s a good sign,” Bellamy said.

“We were really lucky.

“We need to fix up our attack, we couldn’t hang on to the ball in the first half; just really simple errors from individuals.”

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