Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy says Canberra coach David Furner must think the Storm are a “bunch of hillbillies” if he believes the players are taught to tackle around the head of opponents.
Ahead of training on Wednesday Bellamy addressed media before taking questions, teeing off on Canberra and other critics of their tackling style.
His verbal lashing came after the Raiders accused Storm players of employing a new tackle dubbed the “chin strap” during Melbourne’s 24-19 round one win.
Furner sent the NRL the footage of six tackles by Storm players as evidence.
Bellamy conceded one of those tackles, by Todd Lowrie, should have been penalised but said there was no head-high wrestling technique.
“I’m not quite sure whether David Furner thinks we’re a bunch of hillbillies down here,” Bellamy said.
“… If he thinks we actually teach our players to attack the head and necks of other players when that part of the game is so highly under scrutiny these days by the referee, by the match review committee.
“I know we’re not that smart but we ain’t that dumb either.”
Bellamy said he believes his players are an easy target for individuals and opposition clubs who are under pressure.
The Storm have previously been accused of devising other suspect tackling techniques including the ‘chicken wing’, the ‘grapple’ and the ‘crusher’.
by Buford Balony