|Match Date||31st May, 2008|
|Venue||Melbourne (Olympic Park)|
Evergreen Matt Geyer scored his first two tries of the NRL season as Melbourne put the injury-ravaged Bulldogs to the sword on Saturday, winning 46-0 at Olympic Park.
The Dogs were unable to consider 11 regular first-graders due to injury and were forced to make five personnel changes from the original team named on Tuesday, with the most significant absentee being powerhouse second-rower Sonny-Bill Williams (knee).
The home side also had a serious fitness concern of their own, with centre Will Chambers ruled out for the season after rupturing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee at training on Friday night.
The Bulldogs made a solid start, with winger Heka Nanai bundled into touch by Melbourne fullback Billy Slater near the left corner post in the sixth minute.
But once Storm skipper Cameron Smith powered over from dummy half in the 13th minute, the result had a sense of inevitability about it.
The most popular of Melbourne's first-half tries came from the club's leading goalscorer Geyer, who started in place of Chambers.
He took a pass from a flying Slater to score in the 24th minute.
Israel Folau, Steve Turner and Jeremy Smith also scored tries in the opening half as the Storm led 28-0 at the interval.
The Bulldogs almost conceded a farcical try to start the second half, when fullback Nick Youngquest and winger Hazem El Masri let a Cooper Cronk bomb bounce in goal, allowing a charging Ryan Hoffman to flick the ball back to Turner.
But video referee Graeme West disallowed the try as Hoffman's foot was on the deadball line.
After that, the Dogs stepped up the defensive intensity, conceding only three further tries to Michael Crocker, Geyer and Cronk.
Geyer, the Storm's only remaining foundation player, has now scored 107 tries for the club, 30 more than the second-placed Slater on the club's all-time list.
Captain Smith compiled an 18-point haul including one try and seven conversions.
The knee injury to Chambers leaves Melbourne desperately short of outside backs during the Origin period, with Slater, Folau and Greg Inglis (all Queensland) and Anthony Quinn (NSW) all required for the interstate series.
The injury occurred during the final minutes of Friday night's training session, with Chambers landing awkwardly after fielding a high kick.
He will see a specialist on Sunday and is expected to undergo a reconstruction next week.
Chambers, 20, has had a breakthrough season in 2008.
He took the place of the departed Matt King and had played all 10 of the Storm's matches to date this year for a career total of 16.
|Hazem El Masri||Wing||0||0||0||0|
|Joe Williams||Five Eighth||0||0||0||0|
|Ben Roberts||Half Back||0||0||0||0|
|Andrew Ryan||Second Row||0||0||0||0|
|Nick Kouparitsas||Second Row||0||0||0||0|
|Brad Morrin||Front Row||0||0||0||0|
|Charlie Leaeno||Front Row||0||0||0||0|
|Lee Te Maari||Replacement||0||0||0||0|