The Courier-Mail

Melbourne eyeing one two punch

- NICK SMART

MELBOURNE Storm dummy halves Brandon Smith and Harry Grant have vowed to strengthen their one-two punch and keep opposition sides guessing starting with Friday night’s blockbuste­r against the Roosters.

Smith has started in the No.9 jersey in every game this season, but Grant (below) – last year’s Dally M hooker of the year – returned from a knee injury off the bench in last week’s win over Canterbury.

The New Zealand internatio­nal believed it could be a horses for courses approach from week to week.

“I think with Harry not playing for a while I think I’ll still be starting (this week), but we’ll come up p with a plan to see what teams sort of suit me starting compared to Harry and likewise,” Smith said.

“It might be a good d id idea f for me to start this week just because the Roosters play a big power game and I’m a little bit bigger than Harry, so be able to take a bit of the sting out of them.

“We’ll just see what the plan is and I’m sure the coaches will have a good one.”

Grant agreed, although he admitted he felt physically capable of playing 80 minutes at hooker after recovering from his knee issue.

“Hopefully we can keep that one-two punch going (with Smith),” Grant said.

“I think I’m capable (of playing 80 minutes) but it’s just what the coaches want to go with and also what’s best for the team. With the opposition we play each week, it might change.”

In previous years, Smith has come off the bench playing as an explosive forward through the middle of the field.

He reverted to that lock forward role when Grant came on against the Bulldogs, and admitted he felt comfortabl­e doing so.

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