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The Foxx too clever for old Storm teammates in Bulldogs' painful defeat

Andrew Mathieson -

Josh Addo-Carr had almost single-handedly dragged Canterbury over the line against hosts Melbourne Storm on Friday night.

The former Storm winger crossed for three second-half tries inside just 13 minutes to turn around a 10-0 half-time deficit into a 14-10 lead for the Bulldogs.

Addo-Carr continuously caused his adversary, Will Warbrick, trouble on the left edge, but despite 243 run metres with the ball the Gunggandji, Birrbay and Wiradjuri man was just unable to cross again for a fourth time in the final 20 minutes of the clash.

The Storm were starved of scoring opportunities throughout the second half and one of their few chances paid off when Shawn Blore crashed over for his second-ever try across 37 NRL matches in his fourth for his side for a 16-14 lead just on 75 minutes.

The irony in the wake of the result was that Addo-Carr, who built his try-scoring reputation around a stint of 98 tries from 116 games at the Storm, was recycled following a brief stint at West Tigers, the same club that Blore, an Australian-born Maori, was excreted from in the offseason in a player swap for Papuan Justin Olam.

Addo-Carr was distraught after the two-point loss that by most metrics had the better team leave Melbourne without the justifiable victory.

"Shattered bra, you know what I mean, shattered,” he told ABC radio afterwards.

“I thought we started the game really good – it was just the last-play execution by the Storm that let us down at the start there, but we fought our way back.

“We gave ourselves every chance of being in the game, but you need to be on every time when you play the Storm.”

After scoring once last year in the upset over the Storm with a new-look lineup, Addo-Carr is backing the backline to do their job and for the other components of the Dogs’ game to also click towards improving on the Bulldogs' lacklustre 2-4 win/loss record.

“We know we have got a dangerous left edge there, (so) we just play to our strengths,” he said.

“So we just go again, we go again, we are putting some efforts in, but some moments are letting us down.”

Canterbury were back within striking distance following the first of Addo-Carr’s 48th minute try when he gladly accepted a pass and broke away from the Storm defenders for a 60-metre run to the line.  

Addo-Carr scored again in the 56th minute after running onto the ball from a series of rapid passes close to the line to level scores.

He had a lot more space and time to complete the hat-trick try after the final Bulldogs’ ball created the overlap in the 61st minute for the deserving four-point break over the Storm.

Reimis Smith had an impact on the scoreboard earlier in the match, involved in the most unconventional try of the night after the Bundjalung man combined with Xavier Coates to hand Melbourne a surprise 10-0 lead in the first half.

The Papua New Guinean international showed his strength to somehow extricate his body just enough off a firm-holding tackle from Jacob Kiraz, whose attempts to push Coates over the sideline backfired as the strong winger grubbered out a smothering kick that crawled onto the line for Smith to dive on following 23 minutes.

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