Bellamy poaches Judd to wrestle back waning premiership tilt
Coach Craig Bellamy. AAP Image/Dean Lewins
It’s official: the Melbourne Storm are currently as flat as discarded party cola. Craig Bellamy is fast becoming in need of a proverbial Mentos in the soft drink real soon, otherwise his aspirations for a coveted top two spot could be under threat from a chasing horde of clubs.
With his troops battle-taxed and energy-parched after a torrid Origin campaign crammed with lactic acid, the word from AAMI Park is that the Storm boss has decided to have a geeze outside of his current player group for an injection of much-craved fizz.
The only problem is that due to the recent passing of the 30th June player swap, he can’t look among the usual recyclables of the NRL opposition fringes for inspiration, meaning unloved and neglected resources from league’s backwoods are out of the equation.
Time is also a factor, with seven rounds in the year remaining, so he’s mindful that his gun-for-hire will need to have the ability to slot effortlessly into his system as if he has been microchipped with the Melbourne playbook.
Bellamy knows it’s going to take some funky recruitment subterfuge to re-carbonate his 2012 crusade, like a stern pump from a Soda-Stream.
And the word from a few gossip ferrets down south is that the biggest story in Australian footy is on the verge of breaking due to his predicament.
This is how it played out:
It was a lonely Friday night. Bellamy was pacing around his modest digs, trying to conjure an antidote.
As he tried to remedy his edginess with a few gentle ales and an aimless wander around the television stations, he stopped on the AFL match between Carlton and North Melbourne.
In a rare moment of mental relaxation, the flow of the game and its dominant players caught his attention. As he studied the action, the unthinkable idea of a cross-code assault to revamp his stocks leapt to mind.
“Too many Melbourne Bitters,” Bellamy whispered to himself as a few pie-in-the-sky options busting their guts on the MCG turf swirled around his purple brain as potential solutions to his team’s downtrend.
Then, at the 10 minute mark of the second quarter, the answer emerged from a pack of tight shorts and coldly stared him in the face like a psychotic ex-spouse.
It was gripped to the end of a gnarled Kangaroo limb. It was Chris Judd.
When Bellamy witnessed the beef jerky-tough Carlton megastar yank and then separate the arm from the shoulder cuff of North Melbourne’s Leigh Adams, his former vague respect and passing interest in the man immediately transformed to thoughts of him tyrannising a play-the-ball in purple.
The adept display of a rugby league ruck-retardation that he witnessed from Judd was surgically-precise and seemingly educated. It compelled Bellamy to frantically search Google for the dossier of the former Brownlow Medallist for further intel.
What he found made his already animated eyes light up like a Griswold Christmas.
It was nearly identical to Tuesday’s training schedule.
2005: elbow manoeuvre to the head. 2007: unnecessary contact with the face. 2009: pressure point submission hold!
“It’s a bloody Greco-Roman job application!” he ferociously yelled with a level of furious excitement that propelled the froth of his refreshment from his lips.
And from there, the negotiating phone calls to the Judd stakeholders began.
The Mentos to refresh his season has been located and Bellamy will be driving a hard bargain to get the Storm defensive savant he requires to circuit-break the 2012 NRL Premiership.
Get ready for the biggest talent grab in the code war so far.*
*Pending salary cap approval.
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