Switching codes ... Marika Koroibete in action for the Melbourne Storm. Photo: AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy.
Switching codes ... Marika Koroibete in action for the Melbourne Storm. Photo: AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy. TRACEY NEARMY

Rebels switch too good to miss, says Storm’s Koroibete

FLYING winger Marika Koroibete says he is excited about what the Melbourne Storm can achieve this season despite confirming he had agreed to terms with the Melbourne Rebels.

The Fijian has become an important member of the Storm backline since crossing from the West Tigers in the middle of the 2014 NRL season, where he had been languishing in the reserves. He has scored 27 tries in 41 games under coach Craig Bellamy. Koroibete said switching codes had been an extremely difficult decision, but the two-year deal offered by the Rebels was too good to pass up.

"It was a very hard decision to make to leave the Storm, but it's a great opportunity for my young family here in Melbourne and my family back home in Fiji," the 23-year-old said.

"While I have made the decision about next year, my focus is on finishing here at Storm in the best way.

"It's a tight group of players and hopefully we can have a good rest of the season.

"I am very excited about what we can do this season."

Meanwhile, New Zealand Warriors coach Andrew McFadden said blockbusting winger Manu Vatuvei was still working through some personal issues, but was close returning to the game.

The 30-year-old has been on leave from the club since being dropped for the round nine game against the Dragons for using prescription pills and energy drinks on a night out with teammates. That followed the 42-0 Anzac Day loss to the Storm in Melbourne.

"He's had some other stuff come up more recently which has probably delayed that comeback, but he's very close," McFadden said. "It all just got a bit too much, so at the moment we've just got to look after Manu and he's tracking along well."


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