Penrith has suffered its second pool round defeat at the Auckland Nines, going down to the Storm 20-4 at Eden Park.
The strong Melbourne outfit scored their first points in the opening minute of the match after some very quick play down the right side, which saw their winger sprint down the sideline to score, leaving our defenders in his wake.
They backed that up 2 minutes later when their other winger was left unmarked and he took off in some open space, sprinting 20m to dive over the line. With the conversion, they took a 10-0 lead.
It was soon three tries to nothing with just 4 minutes of play gone. Melbourne has burst out to a 14-0 lead and were running rings around us, taking advantage of every mistake we made.
But there was a small glimmer of hope with 2 minutes until the halftime bell, when speedster Josh Jay was handed the ball on the halfway line and he put his head down and took off down the sideline, diving over to take the score to 14-4.
HALF TIME: 14-4 Storm
We looked a little stronger coming into the second half with some good breakaway plays and solid ball play, but it wasn’t long before the Storm got the better of us and they had soon added another 6 points to their tally thanks to a converted try, giving them an unbeatable 20-4 lead, with less than 5 minutes on the clock.
The rest of the match bounced from one end of the field to the other, but there were no more points scored.
FULL TIME: 20-4 Storm