Sosaia Feki produced a miracle ball to set-up teammate Valentine Holmes in Cronulla’s must-win clash against the Melbourne Storm.
The individual moment of brilliance came off the back of a regular set of six, and just as nothing seemed to be happening, Feki turned it on.
The Sharks winger put on the burners to get on the outside of Melbourne winger Suliasi Vunivalu, and what happened next was scintillating.
Despite Vunivalu making decent contact with Feki to send him in the direction of the touchline, the pacey winger managed to keep his balance.
Just as Feki was about to go into touch, he sent the football back on the inside to be received by Holmes, who had nothing but the try-line in his sights.
Feki’s passs was immediately lauded by the commentators.
“He’s such a wonderful player,” said Michael Ennis.
“To back yourself in that split moment… and find Holmes inside will do him a world of good.”
The incredible passage of play was overshadowed by calls of a forward pass, but the referees ruled that it left the hands backwards and floated forwards.
Feki’s pass was quickly labelled a “miracle ball”, and the fans were in awe of the play.
Ignoring that pass, that was just an awesome try. Can Cronulla keep it going in the second half? #NRLStormSharks
— Jem Nash (@JemNash95) August 12, 2018
#nrlstormsharks pass to me was backward out of hands Holmes backing up as per usual and gets the try
— HΛWK (@HawkReport) August 12, 2018
— Nathaniel Eldridge (@fanno36) August 12, 2018
That pass WAS backwards out of the hands. Correct call. #NRLStormSharks
— James Hooper (@jimmyhooperFX) August 12, 2018
— Jalisa Gilbert (@JalisaG15) August 12, 2018
In a high-quality affair, the Sharks’ desperate defence proved the difference, with the Storm held up over the tryline three times and the dying minutes uncannily similar to their 2016 grand final decider.
Melbourne duo Will Chambers and Suliasi Vunivalu combined twice for Storm tries – the last in the 72nd minute – to keep their team in the hunt, but they were unable to find another to take the win.
Cronulla had won only once in Melbourne since 2009 but came out with all guns blazing.
Taking advantage of multiple Storm errors hooker Jayden Brailey scooted from dummy-half to dive across in the seventh minute for the opening try.
A superb backhand flick pass from Chambers found winger Vunivalu although Cameron Smith, who had an off day with the boot, was unable to level.
The Sharks extended their lead when winger Sosaia Feki somehow managed to dance down the sideline before flinging a ball back in-field for Valentine Holmes.
Fullback Holmes was one of his team’s best, also tackling Joe Stimson to prevent a Storm try with 16 minutes left on the clock.
The Sharks led 13-4 at halftime after halfback Chad Townsend added a field goal, which looked as if it could prove valuable in the dying minutes.
Billy Slater, who announced his retirement midweek, helped closed the margin to 13-10 early in the second stanza when he ran on to a Cameron Munster grubber in the in-goal.
But Munster then a threw a loose pass that led to the Sharks’ final try.
It was scooped up by centre Jesse Ramien and despite being brought down by Josh Addo-Carr after a 60m dash, Cronulla winger Josh Dugan took the ball from dummy-half and burst through some soft defence to help seal the win.