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ELMO Match Preview: Sea Eagles vs Storm

Two fierce modern-day rivals are set to ignite Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane this Saturday night.

The Sea Eagles and the Melbourne Storm have shared a passionate rivalry since the 2007 and 2008 Grand Finals and this Round 21 blockbuster is building up to be one of the games of the season.

Let's have a look at some key facts and figures.

Premiership ladder

Competition leaders Melbourne have all but wrapped up the minor premiership with 17 wins from 19 games to boast a huge points differential.

The Sea Eagles sit in sixth place with 12 wins from 19 games and a win over the Storm could see them join Parramatta and the Sydney Roosters on 28 points as they continue to strive for a top four finish.

Recent Form against Opposition

The Storm have won four of the past five matches against the Sea Eagles, including the past three.

Manly’s last win was in Round 19, 2019 - the memorable 11-10 victory at AAMI Park courtesy of a brilliant Daly Cherry-Evans field goal in Golden Point.

It’s Hot, Damn Hot!

Winning form means everything and between them, both sides go into this clash with 9 victories from their last 10 matches.

The Storm have won their past five straight, recording some very big score lines.  They are currently on a 16 match winning streak record for the most consecutive wins dating back to round 4 this season.

The Sea Eagles have recorded four wins from their past five games and like the Storm, have piled on the points too, passing the 40 points mark in their last two victories.

The match will be the 39th clash between the two clubs with Manly winning 15 of the past 38 games. Two games were drawn.

Lethal attack

With both teams possessing lethal attacking artillery, this could be a point scoring blitz.

Two of the NRL’s fastest players in wingers Josh Addo-Carr and Manly’s Jason Saab have crossed for 21 and 18 tries respectively this season.

The ‘Fox’, Addo-Carr, sits second on the tries leaderboard with the ‘Saab’ in third place on 18 tries.

Sea Eagles winger Reuben Garrick sits on top of the points scoring leaderboard with 216 points through 15 tries (sixth place) and 83 goals.

Match ups

There are more match ups here than a dating app!

Where do you start? From two very big forward packs to backlines boasting tremendous speed and skills, there is just so much mouth-watering talent on show.

Here are just a few to whet your appetite

Full-backs: Tom Trbojevic v Nicho Hynes

Centres: Morgan Harper vs Justin Olam

Five-eighth: Kieran Foran vs Cameron Munster

Half-backs: Daly Cherry-Evans vs Jahrome Hughes

Props: Taniela Paseka vs Jesse Bromwich; Martin Taupau vs Christian Welch

Lock: Jake Trbojevic vs Dale Finucane.

Plus, you’ve got two of the greatest and most successful premiership winning coaches of all time in Des Hasler and Craig Bellamy.

Just sit back, enjoy, and scream Go Manly!

Turbo Injected

It’s one of the most common cliches used in sport that ‘you are only as good as your last game’.

In that case, Tom Trbojevic was simply outstanding. 'Turbo' ripped the Sharks to pieces with three tries, three line-breaks, four line break assists, three try assists, five off-loads, 14 tackle-busts, and ran for 217 minutes – all in a 70 minute performance.

Century maker!

Manly prop Josh Aloiai will play his 100th NRL game against the Storm.

Aloiai played 90 games for the Wests Tigers before joining the Sea Eagles this season. Expect a special game from the aggresive forward after missing last week’s win over the Sharks due to suspension.

History lesson

Two grand finals and many great battles is the story behind these two proud clubs.

The Storm beat the Sea Eagles in the 2007 Grand Final before having the title stripped off them in 2010 for salary cap breaches.

In 2008, the Sea Eagles smashed the Storm 40-0 to record the game’s highest ever grand final winning margin. It remains the most sweetest grand final victory of the eight titles for many Manly fans.

And then there was the infamous ‘Battle of Brookvale’ on August 26, 2011, when the two clubs were involved in a nasty brawl in a spiteful 18-4 win to Manly. Ten players were later suspended.

Biggest winning margins

Sea Eagles: 40, 2008 Grand Final, 40-0, ANZ Stadium

Storm: 34, 40-6, AAMI Park, Rd 21, 2017