Kaufusi at the double as Storm tame Tigers, Raiders down Titans


Melbourne Storm withstood a rousing second-half Wests Tigers fightback to move just two points behind NRL leaders Cronulla Sharks with a 29-20 victory at AAMI Park on Sunday.

Craig Bellamy's side suffered a first defeat since April against St George Illawarra Dragons last weekend, but responded with a first-half blitz of the Tigers eight days later.

Felise Kaufusi scored his first double before Tohu Harris and Marika Koroibete added further tries, with Cameron Smith converting all four and adding a penalty to put the Storm 26-0 up at half-time.

The Tigers must have been fearing a hiding, but made a game of it after the break and threatened to pull off a remarkable fightback when they trailed by only six points with 15 minutes remaining.

James Tedesco scored his 11th try in 12 games early in the second half prior to Luke Brooks, Tim Simona and David Nofoaluma touching down, with Mitchell Moses converting two of the four tries.

Melbourne were not to be denied victory, though, as Cooper Cronk slotted over a drop-goal from 35 metres out and Smith's late penalty gave Bellamy's men further breathing space.

Canberra Raiders moved up to seventh spot with a 30-22 victory over injury-hit Gold Coast Titans at Cbus Super Stadium.

Jarrod Croker scored a first-half double following an early Paul Vaughan try and Brenko Lee crossed twice after the break to get the Raiders back on track following a defeat to Brisbane Broncos last time out.

A Nene Macdonald brace proved to be in vain for a Titans side who were without William Zillman due to a foot injury and lost centre Nathan Davis to a suspected broken leg in the first half.