SCENES! Marlin miracle unfolds in game of the year
THE SCU Marlins won one of the greatest games in Mid North Coast rugby history on Saturday, scoring an unbelievable match-winning try well after 80 minutes had ticked over.
With only a few minutes remaining the Marlins looked to be home leading 36-31, though a crucial turnover in their own half allowed the Snappers to get back in the game.
Big man Joe de Dassel showed a brilliant deft touch when he put outside back Ollie Gibbon though a hole.
Gibbon burned the defence to leave the scores at 36-36.
Soon after the Snappers received a penalty in their own half, with just seconds left on the clock.
The Snappers kicked for touch and with time expired, were accumulating phases as they made their way towards the tryline.
It looked as if the Marlins were going to suffer their second heartbreaking loss to their rivals within a matter of weeks.
Then, a miracle.
The Marlins were able to win the ball in the ruck and quickly spun it wide to their outside centre Jarryd Franck.
The number 13 burst away down the left hand touchline and at full speed produced a left-foot banana kick in-field for a flying Aaron Rigney.
The flyhalf caught the kick on the full and scored under the posts. Cue delirium.
Marlins captain AJ Gilbert said it was probably the best win he has been a part of.
"I've been in games we're we've kicked a late goal or a tough penalty goal to win, but not one with a try like that,” Gilbert said.
"He (Franck) did a similar kick earlier in the match when he should have just gone off his right foot, but that kick he produced at the end was something special.
"The effort from the guys to be up around and supporting him at the end as well, their wasn't just Aaron there, Damo (Damien Dumas) and Gurang Gurang were there as well.”
The 43-36 victory will go down in folklore as one of, if not the best, win in SCU Marlin history.
Gilbert said the nature of the triumph reflects his side's never say die attitude.
"When they scored that late try I was telling the boys it doesn't matter if they convert it or not, we just have to score again.
"Even when they got the penalty at the end and they went for it by kicking for touch I was thinking 'here's our chance'.
"In regards to where we were on the field and what we had to do to win, it was pretty special.
"It just comes back to the belief the boys are starting to build in the group.”