Rugby League

Townsend's golden field goal downs Knights

March 16, 2024 9:17 pm

[Source: NRL]

A Chad Townsend field goal in golden point saw the Cowboys produce a dramatic come-from-behind 21-20 victory over the Knights in Townsville on Saturday.

Down 12-0 at the end of a first half in which they made 10 errors and had just 38 percent of the ball, North Queensland fought back to within two points early in the second half before falling behind by as much as 10 again midway through the second stanza.

A try from Jeremiah Nanai with three to play looked to have set the hosts up for the win, but Valentine Holmes pushed the ensuing conversion wide and after a frantic final minute, which saw Newcastle work into field goal range but have the ball stripped and Holmes thump a long-range drop goal just wide, it went to golden point.

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There the Cowboys worked down field on their first set, with Townsend slotting the winner despite heavy pressure from Kalyn Ponga, to ensure they remain unbeaten in 2024.

Earlier it had looked like it simply wouldn’t be North Queensland’s day, as they coughed up error after error to put themselves under a heap of pressure.

A double from Adam Elliott saw Newcastle establish a two-score lead at the break, but they watched most of their good work disappear in the space of minutes to start the second half as the hosts scored twice in four minutes to make it 12-10.

Kyle Feldt popped a late offload for Townsend to score off his own kick, before the veteran wing scored one of his own to draw even with Matt Bowen as the Cowboys’ all-time leading try-scorer.

Momentum changed again following a monster hit from Daniel Saifiti which forced an error from Jake Granville, with Greg Marzhew’s try, coupled with a Kalyn Ponga conversion and penalty goal, giving the visitors a 10-point buffer again.

But there were more twists to come.

Tom Dearden put the comeback back on the menu with a barnstorming run over the line from close range, before his side got over again through Holmes but had the game-tying try claim overturned due to obstruction.