The Storm were nominated by Netball Australia as a preferred bidder for one of three new team licences under their expansion plans and on 17 August 2016 it was announced that the new team will be called Sunshine Coast Lightning and be based on the Sunshine Coast at the Storm sports Academy and in effect be a second Queensland Team. Both teams play for the Michael Moore Trophy. The Storm responded by belting the Dragons 70–10. New Zealand Warriors. Appearances: NRL games for Melbourne Storm only.
In 2019, the club returned to the top of the table winning the Minor Premiership finishing six points ahead of the Sydney Roosters, however, their finals campaign was not as successful with ultimately exiting the finals after a defeat in the Preliminary Final once again to the Roosters. Melbourne Storm players have also won the Dally M medal on five occasions: Cameron Smith twice in 2006 and most recently in 2017, Billy Slater in 2011 and Cooper Cronk twice in 2013 and 2016. In 2007, the Storm finished the season Minor Premiers by finishing on top of the table again. The affiliation lasted three seasons before the Storm decided to establish their own team in the NSW Cup in 2010 which would share its namesake. Melbourne only lost four games in the season, making them outright leaders by four wins. They are not moving and News Limited is apparently committed to keeping them financially. The game was a very hard-fought match, as the game hung in the balance until the dying second but the Sharks hung on to win. He was replaced by Mark Murray. Melbourne severed ties with both the Bears and the Devils in 2007 and aligned themselves with the Central Coast Storm in the New South Wales Cup. The Melbourne Storm salary cap breach was a major breach of the National Rugby League's strictly enforced salary cap by the Melbourne Storm club over a period of five years. The origin of the rivalry stems back the period between 2007 – 2012 when both clubs were consistently at the top of the table. Ryan Papenhuyzen - 9. The Storm began its 2013 season with a trip to England where they defeated the Leeds Rhinos 18–14 in the World Club Challenge, to be crowned World Champions. The Storm were originally a Super League initiative, created in 1997 during the Super League war, however, following the Super League collapse, the team became a part of the newly formed, united competition. 1997–1999: Establishment and 1st Premiership, 2003–2006: Craig Bellamy era begins – return to the top, 2007–2010: Finals success and club turmoil, 2011–2012: Rebuild and Premiership success, 2013–2017: World Champions, Milestones and 3rd Premiership, 2018–2020: 20th Anniversary and 4th Premiership, This table lists the official Melbourne Storm Club Captains, however, there have been 23 playing captains as of the 2020 season. Since then the Storm have had varying sponsors adorning the jersey.  Matches between the two clubs are normally close and low scoring, with the overall head to head (as of 2020) in Melbourne's favour (45 clashes, Storm 27-Warriors 16 and 2 draws). .  Melbourne would go on to finish second on the table at the end of the 2020 regular season behind Minor Premiers Penrith, before beating Penrith in the final to win their fourth official premiership, and cementing their status as one of the most successful clubs of the modern NRL era.  In round 19 a major milestone was achieved with Cameron smith playing his 300th game becoming only the 24th player in history to do so. All four of these colours appeared in the logo until it was changed in 2017 with the colour Yellow being removed as of 2018. Following winning the 2012 premiership and having sustained onfield success, crowd numbers continued to rise. The discovery of these breaches in 2010 by the NRL resulted in it stripping the Storm of all honours achieved as a team between 2006 and 2010.  The club won eight of their first eleven games of the 1999 NRL season, and went on to make the finals in third position on the Premiership ladder. In addition, AC/DC song "Thunderstruck" is played at every home game as the team enter the stadium. Biography: The 200cm powerhouse played in every game in 2019, averaging 40 minutes on the field. Also, don’t forget to check out the Heaviest & Lightest Players in the NRL. In January 1999, CEO John Ribot negotiated a deal that saw Melbourne Storm games televised in China every weekend. Melbourne captain Cameron Smith commented on the rivalry prior to their 2009 Preliminary Final at Etihad Stadium. The Melbourne Storm Rugby League Club was unveiled at a function at the Hyatt Hotel – Melbourne in February 1998.  The club's highest official "home" attendance of 52,347 occurred in the 2016 season – this was during a doubleheader game at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane..
Melbourne's Premiership defence began relatively slowly losing their first four games of the 2000 NRL season, the club went on to make the finals (finishing 6th), but were eventually knocked out by Newcastle Knights in the quarter-finals. North Queensland Cowboys. Cameron Smith was suspended for two matches for a grapple tackle on Brisbane's Sam Thaiday in the match, seeing him miss the rest of the finals, and Craig Bellamy was fined $50,000 for making scathing remarks against the judiciary's decision. 1 This table lists the official Melbourne Storm Club Captains, however, there have been 23 playing captains as of the 2020 season.  Dave Donaghy was announced as his replacement. The club's original logo of "Storm Man" riding over storm clouds and throwing a bolt of lightning was in place from the club's inception through to the end of the 2017 season when, as part of the club's 20th Anniversary, the Storm introduced a new logo used throughout the 2018 season. Billy Slater won his second Clive Churchill medal.  The song is sung to the same tune as the US Marines' Hymn. For a complete list see.  The Storm managed to finish 3rd in 2013; however, successive losses to the South Sydney Rabbitohs and Newcastle Knights in the finals saw the Storm miss the Preliminary Finals for the first time since 2005 (excluding 2010). This secured a berth in the 2007 NRL Grand Final against the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles which they won 34–8, with Greg Inglis winning the Clive Churchill Medal for best on ground.  Former Brisbane Broncos centre Chris Johns became the CEO of the club and Ribot stepped down from the head of Super League to set up the club.
This change included replacement of the News Ltd Board and Executive, which included the replacement of Chairman Stephen Rue with Bart Campbell and CEO Ron Gauci with Mark Evans. Eagles and STORM, not Eagles and Roosters – at Homebush!! This period also saw the arrival and rise of young Queenslanders Billy Slater, Cameron Smith and Cooper Cronk. The club had won enough matches to make the finals, but automatically finished in last place due to the penalties. In 2005, the Storm also established an affiliation with the North Sydney Bears in the New South Wales Cup. Storm played its fifth Preliminary Final in six years, this time defeating Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles 40–12 at AAMI Park. The most capped player is Cameron Smith with 430 NRL appearances thus far. With the Super League and ARL joining into one competition for the 1998 season, the Melbourne team became part of the National Rugby League (NRL).
The Melbourne club failed to make the finals in 2001.
These two sides played an annual ANZAC Day clash each year between 2009 and 2014. The club also moved away from a single captain electing to use a rotating captains policy, in 2006 alone used five Captains including Cameron Smith for the first time. Between 2010 and 2012, gold returned, silver was omitted and purple became the dominant colour in the jersey. Check out the full list of player heights here! The global COVID-19 pandemic hit Australia in late February forcing all games behind closed doors and then a total suspension and reorganization of the season.
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