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Nick Meaney in brutal development amid Ryan Papenhuyzen’s return to NRL

Nick Meaney and Ryan Papenhuyzen.

Nick Meaney and Ryan Papenhuyzen at the Melbourne Storm. Image: Getty

Nick Meaney has revealed Melbourne Storm coach Craig Bellamy has flagged the possibility that he might be moved to the bench once Ryan Papenhuyzen is ready for NRL action. Papenhuyzen recently returned to the playing field after 12 months on the sidelines with a fractured kneecap he suffered in a game last year.

The dynamic fullback has played three games in the Queensland Cup and appears on the verge of making his return to the NRL. Bellamy and the Storm have remained coy about papenhuyzen-return-locked-in-melbourne-storm-handed-massive-boost-065858625.html” data-ylk=”slk:if and when they will deploy Papenhuyzen in first grade;cpos:3;pos:1;elm:context_link;itc:0;outcm:mb_qualified_link;_E:mb_qualified_link;ct:story;” class=”link yahoo-link”if and when they will deploy Papenhuyzen in first grade, but have suggested it could come before the finals in three weeks’ time.

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Meaney has been brilliant at the back for the Storm in Papenhuyzen’s absence, and would have every right to feel hard done by if he loses his spot. But the fullback has revealed to AAP that a switch to the bench has been flagged with him.

With no other injuries in the backline, there is no clear place for the in-form Meaney in the starting line-up once Papenhuyzen returns. “Craig sort of spoke to me about when he comes back, whether there’s that role coming off the bench, or keep my spot at fullback,” Meaney said.

“He’s spoken to me about just playing my best footy, try and learn each week, get better each week. I knew that coming down here that Paps was here (as first-choice fullback). I’m there to do my best job for the team, no matter where that is.”

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