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Tupou Equals Record as Roosters Fall to Storm

A history-making night for the Sydney Roosters in their return to the Sydney Cricket Ground resulted in a 30-16 defeat to the Melbourne Storm on Saturday evening. 

Daniel Tupou crossed for his 139th NRL try to equal Anthony Minichiello's all-time try-scoring record, while Siua Wong found his first four-pointer in first grade, but defensive lapses proved costly for the Tricolours. 

In the opening minute, Jared Waerea-Hargreaves set the tone for the match, landing a hard shot on Storm Skipper Christian Welch in the middle of the field. 

Forced to defend their line after the visitors were granted a penalty close-range, Jake Turpin made a try-saving tackle on Harry Grant after the Maroons representative split the defensive line.

Turpin with a Try-Saver

Melbourne were penalised for pushing Billy Smith into touch shortly after, affording the hosts an early opportunity from close range. But an attempted rainbow ball from Sandon Smith to Fetalaiga Pauga, who was alone on the wing, was snatched out of the air by Storm winger Xavier Coates. 

Racing 90 metres with Pauga and Luke Keary sprinting to catch him, Coates won the foot-race to claim first points, with Nick Meaney converting the try to give the Storm a six-point advantage. 

A piece of brilliance from Keary forced Melbourne to concede a goal-line drop-out, with Nat Butcher chasing down the grubber to assist. On the restart, Daniel Tupou was taken out in the air, giving the Roosters more possession close to the stripe.

But a handling error from the Tricolours returned possession to the visitors. Heroic defence from Joseph-Aukuso Suaalii, Sandon Smith and Pauga returned the favour, causing Justin Olam to lose his grip on the ball in the resuming set. 

An offload from Tupou sent Keary straight through the Storm defence, with the speedy Skipper flying up the SCG towards the stripe.

Keary Runs the SCG

Seconds later, the Tricolours sent the ball left with quick hands from Nat Butcher and Billy Smith finding Tupou who touched down in the corner for try number 138. 

Tupou Finds the Stripe

On the restart, Meaney was penalised for running behind his teammates, but Suaalii's penalty goal waved away, leaving the score at 6-4 as the opening half came to a close. 

Multiple errors from the Storm meant the Roosters had an ideal start to the second-stanza, holding on to long periods of possession, but were unable to turn their opportunities into points.

Jahrome Hughes stormed through a hole in the Tricolours' defence to claim a try in the 52nd minute, with Meaney slotting the conversion to put Melbourne ahead by eight. 

Three minutes later, Coates crossed for a double after a chip-kick from Cameron Munster bounced off the winger's chest before he collected the ball and planted it in-goal. Meaney continued his perfect night on the boot, converting the try to make the margin 14. 

A successful captain's challenge from the visitors resulted in a penalty for an illegal ball-strip, but an error from Hughes shut down the Storm's chances. 

Scramble defence from Collins and Nat Butcher halted the Storm momentarily but sneaky play from Harry Grant out of dummy half found more points for Melbourne in the 63rd minute, with Meaney adding the extras to make the score 24-4. 

Coates found his third try of the evening in the same fashion as his second, gathering a Munster chip kick to ground the ball in-goal. Meaney kicked the conversion to give the Storm a 26-point advantage. 

A penalty for high contact on Pauga gave the Roosters a glimmer of hope in the 77th minute, with a left edge play finding Tupou alone on the wing to level Anthony Minichiello's all-time try-scoring record. Suaalii converted the four-pointer to reduce the deficit to 20. 

Two for Tupou

In his second NRL game, Siua Wong coasted over the tryline in the final minute after weaving through the scattered Storm defence, with Suaalii nailing the conversion to make the final score 16-30.

Wong Gets His First

Sydney Roosters 16 (Daniel Tupou 2, Siua Wong tries, Joseph-Aukuso Suaalii 2 goals) def by Melbourne Storm 30 (Xavier Coates 3, Jarome Hughes, Harry Grant tries, Nick Meaney 5 goals).

Acknowledgement of Country

Sydney Roosters respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.