MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 21: Cameron Smith (c) of the Storm poses for a portrait with a photographer during the NRL Preliminary Final match between the Melbourne Storm and the Cronulla Sharks at AAMI Park on September 21, 2018 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Kelly Defina/Getty Images)

Melbourne captain Cameron Smith took a lap of honour and was chaired off Suncorp Stadium following the Storm’s 30-10 win over Canberra on Friday, sending a relatively clear message surrounding his playing future.

Melbourne players formed a guard of honour for their leader shortly after Smith walled around the outskirts of the field thanking fans.

While it seemed to be a clear indication that the 429-game veteran was strongly considering retirement, Smith refused to confirm any decision had been made.

“I can’t tell you, I don’t know (if I will retire),” he said post match.

“All I have worried about this year is trying to play well, and enjoy watching these young fellas grow as footballers and grow as men.

“I’ve been very fortunate in my career to be involved in some really big games with the Storm, and lucky enough to win some premierships along the way.

“There’s a lot of guys starting out their careers who haven’t had that opportunity yet so I’m enjoying their success at the moment and sharing in their journey.

“I haven’t thought past that.”

Former premiership teammate Cooper Cronk believes Smith has made his mind up about his future.

“I think Cameron knows he’s been going to retire for a long period of time,” Cronk said on Fox League.

“I think everyone in the team knows, I think they are keeping it in house. I daresay Cameron Smith is retiring.”

Incoming Brisbane coach Kevin Walters agreed with Cronk.

“He was substituted in the 75th minute on the other side of the ground and received a standing ovation from everyone saying ‘goodbye Cameron'”, Walters said.

“Knowing Cameron he wouldn’t want to make next week about him and what he will do.”


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