The Melbourne Storm have now won 13 of their past 14 games at Suncorp Stadium after Thursday night’s epic 27-25 golden point win over the reigning premiers, the Sydney Roosters.
Forced to relocate to the Sunshine Coast for the foreseeable future due to another COVID-19 outbreak in Melbourne, there is a real possibility of the Storm spending the remainder of the 2020 season in Queensland and if so, six of their remaining seven home games will likely be played at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.
Only their round 10 home game on Friday July 17th against the Gold Coast Titans is up in the air because the Queensland Reds are already scheduled to play at Suncorp on that date.
The Storm are pushing for that match to be played at Sunshine Coast Stadium and they’re even insisting on playing more of their home fixtures there.
But why would they? Sure it is close to the resort where they are staying, but their record at Suncorp Stadium is unbelievable.
No NRL team has dominated the Brisbane Broncos at Suncorp quite like the Storm. They have beaten them by an average of 30.5 points in their past four encounters at the Broncos home ground.
They also annihilated the Parramatta Eels 64-10 during last season’s magic round.
Their only defeat at the venue since 2011, was their 38-36 loss to the Gold Coast Titans in 2017.
With the NRL looking to expand with a second Brisbane team, with the main purpose of more games being played out of Suncorp Stadium, the extra Storm games would allow the NRL to get a gauge on what that would look like and despite the cap on crowds at the moment, there was a good turnout for the heavyweight clash between the Storm and the Roosters to kick-off round eight.
The Storm have a strong supporter base in Queensland and will draw decent crowds while they are there.Embed from Getty Images
While the Broncos are struggling, Suncorp Stadium looks to be a happy hunting ground for away teams at the moment, but if they have to travel to Suncorp to play the Storm, it’s a completely different story.
Their record there is imposing, intimidating even.
AAMI Park has been a graveyard for opposition teams for the past decade and Storm fans will be heartened knowing that although their side is forced to play their home games away from home, they have another graveyard in Brisbane to hold them in good stead for the rest of the 2020 season, if they are looking at an extended period out of Melbourne.
It was always going to be difficult for a club to base themselves interstate because of the coronavirus pandemic and having to travel 90 minutes from Maroochydore to Suncorp for their home games, but rugby league fans in Brisbane deserve to see some quality football, something they’re not getting from the Broncos.
The Storm can make Suncorp Stadium a fortress again, even if it is only temporary.