LOCALS NOW? Cameron Smith chats with Coach Craig Bellamy during a Melbourne Storm NRL training session at Sunshine Coast Stadium on July 07, 2020 in Sunshine Coast, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)
LOCALS NOW? Cameron Smith chats with Coach Craig Bellamy during a Melbourne Storm NRL training session at Sunshine Coast Stadium on July 07, 2020 in Sunshine Coast, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

Storm closing in on Coast with several games possible

The Melbourne Storm is understood to be closing in on securing several home games to be played out of Sunshine Coast Stadium in the coming months.

Rumours have been swirling since last week, when the NRL powerhouse's coach, Craig Bellamy, hinted his side could be in for an extended stay in the region, and was exploring the possibility of playing at least one home game against the Gold Coast Titans at Bokarina.

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The Daily understands up to three home games were being considered for hosting by the Coast's premier sporting venue, to be played in the remainder of a shortened 2020 season.

Storm officials said nothing had been confirmed as yet, and it was understood discussions were ongoing.

The side relocated to the Coast as coronavirus cases started to spiral in Victoria, culminating in 191 new cases overnight and another lockdown period now being considered.

It was understood Channel 9 televised games would not be played at Sunshine Coast Stadium, leaving home games against the Titans (Round 10, Friday, July 17), Bulldogs (Round 13, Saturday, August 8) and Tigers (Round 19, Saturday, September 19) as possible local fixtures.

Coast Councillor Jason O'Pray said he was unable to comment at this stage.

WINNING MENTALITY: Craig Bellamy at the 2017 NRL Grand Final between the Melbourne Storm and North Queensland Cowboys, at ANZ Stadium, October 1, 2017.
WINNING MENTALITY: Craig Bellamy at the 2017 NRL Grand Final between the Melbourne Storm and North Queensland Cowboys, at ANZ Stadium, October 1, 2017.

Sunshine Coast Falcons chairman Ashley Robinson said the prospect of Storm home games being played out of Sunshine Coast Stadium was fantastic, and if it did fall into place he said it would be a real morale boost for rugby league supporters in the region.

The Storm are currently based at Twin Waters.

Bellamy told the Daily last week he would "love to" play games out of the Coast, and the club was "in the throes" of the playing the Titans game at Bokarina.

"We would love to play all our games here if we can," Bellamy said.

"What has to happen to do that, I don't know."

Players' families had started joining the side at Twin Waters, after it became clear their stay would be significantly longer than anticipated.

"It has been hectic, our world has turned upside down a bit. Now that we are here, we have realised we will be here a lot longer than we thought," he said.

Storm bench forward Tom Eisenhuth said he was relishing his time on the Coast, away from the hit and miss Melbourne weather.

"It been unreal," Eisenhuth said of the change in scenery.

"So much sunshine is unusual for us at this time of year.

"It's a lovely place too, they (Twin Waters) are really looking after us. There's no complaints."



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