Determined to send off their departing stars off on a high, the Storm secured a nice 20 point win over the Sharks on Saturday night at AAMI Park, but with both teams having nothing left to play for this season just 8,900 die-hard fans were there to witness it.
Melbourne have now won four from their past five and are already revving themselves up for next season when they will be looking to atone for their salary-cap scandal that marred this year.
It was a disappointing result on Saturday for the Sharks and new coach Flanagan after they posted a shock victory over the Roosters last week, their only victory over the past two months.
Cronulla were impressive in defence early, but a second half surge by the Storm saw Melbourne swim past the circling Sharks and secure victory.
There was just one try scored in a gritty first half when Storm skipper Cameron Smith scored and converted his own try in the eighth minute.
Punters that had money on Cameron Smith to score the first try at SportsBet were rewarded
There was more action in the second half, Melbourne getting in three more tries while Cronulla were only able to cross once.
Winger Dane Nielsen was first over back from the break in the 49th minute after snatching onto a Greg Inglis pass.
Sika Manu followed with another four-pointer in the 56th minute and then Ryan Hinchcliffe in the 73rd minute.
Smith had a top night on the boot converting all four tries to give Melbourne a total of 24 points.
Luke Covell was Cronulla’s sole point scorer when he got over in the 61st minute, but without the conversion they were only able to put four points on the board.
The Sharks had another chance to score earlier when Blake Ferguson got across, but the video ref disallowed the try finding Ferguson had knocked on when taking the intercept.
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