The Melbourne Storm have gone down to the Cronulla Sharks in the NRL grand final by just two points after a thrilling match that went to the final play.
Here are The Roar‘s player ratings for the 2016 minor premiers and runner up.
All the wash-up from the NRL grand final:
» LORD: Gallen leads Sharks into history books
» PRICHARD: 13 extra seconds, but the Sharks did it
» Five talking points
» Ten best tweets from the match
» Sharks player ratings
» Match report: Sharks’ wait over
» Re-live the match with our live blog
1. Cameron Munster – 7
The Melbourne fullback was safe at the back all game, and it could have been a lot worse for the Storm without his work defensively. Also strong running the ball, although he seemed to lack a little in his usual creative department – explainable by the fact Melbourne made 432 tackles.
2. Suliasi Vinivalu – 6.5
Was good without being spectacular on the wing. He did close to his job, but didn’t do enough when running the ball to ease pressure on the forwards as he should have. The winger also struggled to find any space out wide.
3. Will Chambers – 7
This might have been the first time Chambers has really looked like himself since he was injured. Looked to roam and run the ball across field plenty, attempting to create opportunities and was almost involved in one of the tries of the season – if only he had of looked up and found Cronk on his inside.
4. Cheyse Blair – 6
Didn’t get heavily involved in the contest, but made some strong runs and was involved in some good plays. Did his job without being spectactular.
5. Marika Koroibete – 8.5
The scoreboard would have looked worse without Koroibete on the park. Did his job and then some in defence, while he was always ridiculously strong with the ball in his final NRL game making 182 metres from 17 runs.
6. Blake Green – 4.5
Green needed to standup, and while he took on the line plenty and looked to be innovative, it simply didn’t come off for him in the end.
7. Cooper Cronk – 4
The experienced Queensland and Australian half saved his worst game of the season for the big dance unfortunately. Just couldn’t land the ball when kicking to get Melbourne out of trouble, and his creative game was lacking plenty.
8. Jesse Bromwich – 8
Bromwich once again proved why he is one of the premier front rowers in the game, and even though he couldn’t single-handedly stop the Cronulla pack, he made a good fist of it. Ended up with 146 metres and 40 tackles.
9. Cameron Smith – 9
An inspirational performance from the captain. More than 70 tackles, and he simply never stopped trying. All class after the match as well.
10. Jordan McLean – 5.5
Solid, not great though. Made some mistakes and wasn’t able to get the Storm off to the good start that they needed.
11. Kevin Proctor – 6
Did plenty of work in defence, and that might have limited his offence – as did Cooper Cronk not playing all that well.
12. Tohu Harris – 7
One of the Storm’s better players – always putting his hand up for an extra run or trying to get involved in a tackle.
13. Dale Finucane – 4.5
Maybe Finucane set the bar too high for himself during the rest of the season, but more was expected of the Melbourne lock. He struggled to get anywhere when running the ball, didn’t get as involved as he normally does and wasn’t a threat at all. Strong in defence though with 37 tackles.
14. Kenneath Bromwich – 4.5
Easily the best of the Melbourne bench players, but didn’t get as involved as he maybe should have. Was solid on and off the ball though making 60 metres and 28 tackles.
15. Tim Glasby – 4
Did enough things right off the bench and didn’t make any mistakes, averaging almost ten metres per run. It was a no-frills effort from Glasby.
16. Christian Welch – 3
Only was on the park for 12 minutes, which was a surprise really as he hadn’t been in bad form leading up to the big dance. Four runs and very little impact. His rating is low because of the high tackle that handed the Sharks a golden attacking opportunity that they took with both hands to win the game.
17. Ben Hampton – 3.5
Didn’t spend a heap of time on the field, and for a team that did so much defence he was underused. The Storm could have really done with his pace and fresh legs, but for the time he was on the field he didn’t make all that much of an impact to the match, apart from the second of Melbourne’s tries which he was involved in.
Roarers, what did you think of the Storm’s performance last night? How would you have rated their players?
Follow Scott on Twitter @sk_pryde