Battling a shoulder injury, Billy Slater will miss Melbourne Storm's NRL opener against the Canterbury Bulldogs.

Slater ruled out of Storm's NRL opener

Melbourne Storm were dealt a blow as star full-back Billy Slater was ruled out of their NRL opener against the Canterbury Bulldogs.

Slater will miss Saturday's clash in Perth due to a shoulder injury suffered in his team's World Club Challenge win over the Leeds Rhinos last month.

The Storm have decided not to risk the 34-year-old in their season opener as they begin their title defence, meaning Slater will have to wait at least another week to play his 300th NRL game.

"While I was very close to playing this weekend, I wanted to ensure I was ready and prepared to step onto the field for an NRL match and for what is a long and rigorous season, taking this precaution is the best course of action," Slater said in a statement on Monday.

Storm football director Frank Ponissi said he expected Slater's absence to be brief.

"Billy trained very well on Friday, however has pulled up a little sore since the session," he said.

"Billy and the medical staff have decided to take the cautious approach and therefore he won't play this Saturday.

"Scans have shown no structural damage, so we don't expect Billy to be sidelined for long."

Super League matches called off

Snow leads to Super League postponements

Three Super League matches which were due to take place on Thursday and Friday have been called off or put back.

Smith undecided over future

Storm skipper Smith undecided over future

Cameron Smith is in no rush to decide whether he will play on in 2019 ahead of the new NRL season.

Wigan rally to beat Widnes

Wigan fight back to beat Widnes, two sent off as Hull defeat Warrington

Rampant Wigan Warriors scored six second-half tries to beat Widnes Vikings, while Warrington lost at Hull FC.

The 2018 NRL season in Opta numbers

Storm look to go back-to-back, Slater and Thurston set for milestones – the 2018 NRL season in Opta numbers

Billy Slater and Johnathan Thurston are set to make their 300th NRL appearances this season.

Leeds win on Headingley return

Watkins, Briscoe doubles give Leeds victorious Headingley return

Back in the familiar surroundings of Headingley, Leeds Rhinos earned a 14th straight home win against Hull FC.