‘Crying poor’: Storm greats ignite Souths feud
Angry at being told their club has no passion, Storm legends have accused South Sydney of "crying poor" and "sour grapes" over the Rabbitohs' 16-lose game losing streak in Melbourne.
The Daily Telegraph has obtained extracts from Souths' fabled Book of Feuds which states: "For everything (Melbourne) were given, they weren't given any passion. That's built, not bought."
Former Storm stars say the comments stem from South Sydney failure to secure victory in Melbourne since 1999.
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Commissioned by Souths co-owner Russell Crowe, the Book of Feuds' chapter on Melbourne has set up a spicy match to start season 2021 at AAMI Park on Thursday night.
Asked about Souths' claims his former club lacked passion, ex-Melbourne forward Robbie Kearns said: "I dare Russell Crowe to say that to Craig Bellamy before he gets the boys up for a grand final or even Thursday night's game.
"Come and listen to Craig Bellamy's pre-game speech and tell me that's not full of passion.
"At the end of the day, they are going to cry poor that they haven't won down there for 16 games in a row. And they will continue to cry poor over that until they beat us down here.
"It's sour grapes as far as we're concerned. Melbourne is 23 years old and we have a marvellous history."
When told about his club's alleged lack of passion, former Storm champion Scott Hill added: "That's an extremely silly thing to say.
"Melbourne is 20 years old. Where were South Sydney when they were 20 years old? Had they had the success we have? Most probably not.
"We are probably the most successful sorting franchise in the history of the country, in any sport.
"Listen to how Cameron Smith will talk about the club for the rest of life. Talk to any who has played at Melbourne. It changed their lives, not just as footballers but as people."
The Book of Feuds saves a hefty whack for the Melbourne Storm.
The extract reads: "Since our first match (against Storm) in May 1998, it's been an unfair fight. However we have never backed down.
"For everything they were given, they weren't given any passion. That's built, not bought. Every victory is a special one against Melbourne. And when we harness that we can unleash a storm of our own.
"The Storm are without doubt part of the modern day 'establishment'.
"They were set up by Super League supremos in 1997 and flushed with News Ltd cash. Their team was stacked with stars of folded Super League club and marquee signings.
"In 1999, their place in the NRL was protected despite having no juniors."
South Sydney has lost the past 16 games to the Storm in Melbourne, more than half those loses have been by 18 points or more. The Rabbitohs have only scored more than ten points in four of those matches.
And Bellamy has beaten sides coached by South Sydney's Wayne Bennett in the pair's last eight encounters.
Both teams will offer incredible spines for the match with Souths boasting Latrell Mitchell, Cody Walker, Adam Reynolds and Damien Cook with Melbourne sending out Ryan Papenhuyzen, Cam Munster, Jahrome Hughes and Brandon Smith.
Originally published as 'Crying poor': Storm greats ignite Souths feud