Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy shuts down talk of return to NSW Origin coach


Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy has shut down talk of a return to the NSW Origin arena, declaring he isn’t interested.

Amid talk current Blues coach Brad Fittler faces the axe after losing three of the past four series, Bellamy has been floated as a possibility.

WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE: Spencer Leniu pushing for spot in NSW team for Origin III.

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Canberra coach Ricky Stuart, NSW assistant and ex-Dragons coach Paul McGregor and even former Wallabies coach Michael Cheika have also been touted as possibilities.

With one match in the current Origin series remaining next month and the Blues trailing 0-2, Fitter’s future will be decided by a NSWRL review.

The NSWRL is reportedly again considering club mentors after its recent preference for non-aligned coaches such as Fittler.

But Bellamy gave a resolute “no” when asked about his interest in returning to the position he held for three series from 2008-2010 – losing each year to Queensland.

“No,” he said on Thursday when asked about any Origin interest.

“Freddy (Fittler) is NSW coach and that’s how it is and how it should be.

Craig Bellamy has said he isn’t interested in being NSW coach again. Credit: Getty Images

“He’s still got a game to go and a job to do and hopefully they will get a win.”

While he only managed two wins from nine games while at the Origin helm, Bellamy has coached 538 games.

The 63-year-old also has a deep knowledge of former Storm star Billy Slater, now the Queensland coach.

Slater was on Thursday assisting the Storm players to adjust to Marvel Stadium, where they will host Penrith on Friday night.

Bellamy could also help unpick top-shelf Maroons minds Cameron Munster and Harry Grant, who were integral in this year’s series win.

But during his last NSW stint the coach spoke of his unease about coaching against his own players – among them Slater, Cameron Smith, Greg Inglis and Cooper Cronk.

The idea of being a coaching consultant to the NSW coach, whether it’s Fittler or someone else, was also floated but Bellamy again resisted the idea.

“No, I’m coach of Storm for this year and next year and that’s all I am concentrating on.”

Before taking on the Queensland role this year Slater said he felt Bellamy’s coaching style was not a natural fit for Origin.

“I think he only knows the one way (to coach),” Slater said in 2020.

“I just think Craig’s a style of coach that really succeeds in the NRL arena with the consistency, having his team for a long period of time.

“In Origin, you just need to get a group of guys together and get them playing for each other.”

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