The Roosters capped off a heroic comeback to beat the Hurricanes 18-14 to book a spot in the finals, with James Tedesco putting the game on the line with a stunning try.
Tedesco was at his best with some clutch plays down the stretch, and the matchup between Jarome Hughes and Luke Kyrie was worth the price of admission alone.
“Finals come early,” Dan Ginnane said on Fox League after the game.
Match Center: Storm vs Roster Teams, Super Coach Results, Videos, Updates
Stream every game of the 2022 NRL Telstra Premiership season live and ad-break free when you play on Kayo. New to Kayo? Start your free trial now >
Listen to the full Jackson Hastings interview on the Fox League podcast
Sam Walker gave the Warriors a 2-0 lead after a kick from David Nofoaluma on the back of a Storm penalty.
Storm’s Justin Olam had a try disallowed to allow the Roosters to march down the other end and Kerry Daniels put the ball in for his first try of the night.
However, a few minutes later, the batsman was injured and left the field.
Kerry Joy Manu scored brilliantly from a corner kick.
Jared Warea-Hargreaves was sent to the Sin bin after both sides were cautioned for repeated tackles.
“That’s a line in the sand,” referee Adam Gee said before sending off the Roster enforcer, who faced Nelson Asofa-Solomona in the next bout, for 10 minutes.
Xavier Coates scored in the corner just before Weir-Hargreaves returned to the field as the Storm capitalized on a man advantage.
It wasn’t until the first half that they were awarded a penalty and Nick Meaney converted to cut the deficit to 14-8.
Joseph Sualei scored a strong finish to outrun Coates and extend his Roster lead in the second half.
Kenny Bromwich produced a brilliant touch to set up a great finish for Menain.
Tedesco and Nat Butcher combined for a try save by Bromwich to kill off their comeback, with Tedesco scoring another try save minutes later to seal a memorable victory.
Here are the key takeaways from the match.
TEDESCO STUNS in the trial-rescue master class
James Tedesco is one of the best players in the game, but it was his defense more than his offense that won the roster.
Tedesco has come up with clutch defensive plays that he can single-handedly defend against in order to avoid a comeback win for the ages.
In a thrilling game of football, the Roosters led 14-0 and won 18-14 before Tedesco had a finger print late in the game.
“It’s sponsored by Duracell,” said Gordon Tallis.
“It’s got the batteries in it. It’s an energy bunny.”
“There’s no game he can’t go to. He is just one of those players.
“Johnny Lang told me that the great players only go because they are wanted, not because they are needed.
“Tedesco is one of those guys who is around the ball no matter where it is. He sees everything.”
Corey Parker praised Tedesco for his brilliant defensive play when the game was on the fly.
“Tedesco’s big plays were on defense,” Parker said.
“He had just 10 runs which was below normal. But not about James Tedesco’s stats. It is to involve oneself at the right time in critical moments.
“The stop against Xavier Coates and the stop against Bromwich.
“That was a try and save in the dying moments of the game. That’s a dead saver any day of the week.
“Then a short time later, a mistake from Sualei brought another try saver.
“His estimation is amazing. The way he can foresee what will happen in the future is frightening.”
Come back to the best in showing off amazingly
A week into the Roosters’ seven-game winning streak, Luke Curry has been linked with a return to form.
Carey was at the peak of his powers against the Hurricanes in his impressive matchup with Jarome Hughes, who excelled on his battered side.
“He’s just a general,” Tallis said of Kerry.
“Most plays go to him. He’s got that running game.
“You’d think Melbourne trained all week to shut him down, but he is.
9 times out of 10 it’s a Tedesco link. He got the late pass.
I think he has regained his confidence. The first half was a try. He’s getting his running game back. He’s taking everything back. ”
Parker believes Kyrie has been at his best this season and will provide the perfect link to superstar Tedesco.
“In the opening 20 minutes, I thought he stopped his running game there, one of the best 20 minutes he’s played all year,” Parker said.
“You have to understand the context of the game and the quality of the game and where these two teams are.
“Melbourne’s in the top four and the Roosters are trying to go for that top four spot.
“He scored two tries in that opening 20 minutes and really set the tone. His kicking game was on point.
“The passing game was electric. He just goes after the defensive line and picks.
“He had a great game.”
Roosters remove the price of victory and shine on the side of the hit
Jarrom Hughes deserved to be in the winning side with his input at AMMI Park and his side almost got a comeback win.
Parker has been impressed by Hughes’ journey from a reserve grader without a role to one of the best halfbacks in the NRL.
“He had nine tackles, 122 rushing yards, nine tackle busts, two line breaks, three pass breakups and a try assist,” Parker said.
“If you start watching rugby league now and pick the Tide as your side, go, what a player Jahrome Hughes is.
But if you’ve been following rugby league and you’ve followed this man’s journey over the years. What a departure. What an evolution as a player.
“One game for the Cowboys, one game for the Titans. He couldn’t find a role at either club. He was the fourth-string fullback in the Hurricanes.”
“He now finds himself on a four-year contract at Storm, one of the Premier League’s top half backs in the competition.
“It’s based on pure hard work on the craft and then performing on the big stage. It’s a hell of a player, but it’s a great story for everyone out there. You can persevere and persevere and work hard at what’s your craft and get it done at the end of the day.” .
The Roosters will be left to reckon with the cost of their win as Jared Warea-Hargreaves is reported twice and Lindsay Collins is reported for a hip drop.
Meanwhile, Victor Radley’s season is in doubt after a sick head injury forced him off the pitch, while Daniel Tuppu was also injured in the first half.
The Melbourne Storm host the Sydney Roosters in a blockbuster clash at AAMI Park.
The Hurricanes have named Brandon Smith as a lock to begin a move for Melbourne in recent weeks with the club he will join next season.
Marion Seve returns from injury and is replaced by Young Tonumaipe as an 18th man.
Tui Kamikamika starts with Felice Kafusi switching to the bench.
Trent Loiro joins the bench while Chris Lewis drops out.
The Roosters welcome back experienced bigs Lindsay Collins (concussion) and Seosua Takiaho (cheekbone) in the run-up to the finals.
Paul Momirowski was the 18th man and Drew Hutchison started in the middle.
The sixth-seeded Roosters need a win to secure their place in the top eight, while the Hurricanes can lock up a top-four spot with a win.
The battle between projected fullbacks Cameron Munster and James Tedesco should be worth the price of admission alone as the two rivals go head-to-head.
Get all the NRL news, highlights and analysis straight to your inbox with Fox Sports Sportmail. Register now!!
Reproduce the step in the blog below. I can’t see? Click here.