It was another heart-break for the young Under 16 Queensland side, who went down to the young NSW Blues side in an entertaining and highly skilled game 22-16 at Suncorp Stadium.
Putting state loyalties aside, it was a stunning try to seal the win for NSW, with Bradman Best streaking down the field to score.
The try came after a failed field goal attempt to Queensland who were trying to break the 16-16 deadlock with just over two minutes remaining in the game.
However, the kick missed and NSW fullback Albert Hopoate was able to carry the ball out of the in-goal area and power away, linking up with Best who ensured his side sored back-to-back wins.
Earlier in the evening, the home side got off to the perfect start when skipper Will Evans found his was over the line after some good lead-up play from prop forward Lance Bagon, who proved hard to handle in the first half. Hooker Jake Simpkin delivered a great ball to Evans who did the rest to score.
The Queenslanders then enjoyed a period of dominance – but crucially could not capitalise and add to their score.
NSW were able to hold out with some great defence; and with just under 10 led to go in the half; they struck back to score off the back of a penalty.
However, Queensland then finished the half on a high when Alo’fiana Khan Pereira grabbed an outside ball and was able to stay just inside as he slid down the left touchline.
With a 12-4 at the break, things were looking good for the home side; but an error from Queensland where they were dragged into touch proved costly.
NSW were able to capitalise on their postion, with Blake Dowel going over near the posts to naroow the margin; while the successful kick from Aaron Schoupp made it 12-10.
Schoupp was the next to score himself minutes later after a hectic last tackle play from NSW saw flick passes, knock downs and every effort to keep the ball alive.
Now in the lead for the first time; they went to 16-12 up after Schoupp’s second conversion.
With just six minutes to go in the match, the Queenslanders levelled the scores with Khan-Pereira over for his second of the night.
Despite coming close, Ezraa Coulston was unable to convert the try and the scores were locked 16-16 with three minutes to go until fulltime.
This set the game up for a field goal attempt – but unfortunately it did not go Queensland’s way.
However, despite the difficult nature to the loss, thee young Queensland side can still hold their heads high, having played some high-intensity and entertaining football.
NSW Under 22 (Cooper Jenkins, Blake Dowel, Aaron Schoupp, Bradman Best tries; Aaron Schoupp 3 goals) def Queensland Under 16 (Will Evans, Alo’fiana Khan-Pereira 2 tries; Ezraa Coulston 2 goals) at Suncorp Stadium
Halftime: 12-4 (Queensland)
Player of the Match: Jaron Purcell (New South Wales)