Brayden Torpy proved the be the pivotal difference in Queensland Universities' hard-fought win over a solid New South Wales Tertiary side, downing the Blues 28-10 at Langlands Park this afternoon.
The Northern Pride custodian had a hand in everything, having provided his invaluable Intrust Super Cup experience in the annual interstate clash.
The game started with both sides locked in a proverbial arm wrestle.
There was punishing defence early on, in particular from the New South Wales pack, led by props captain Matt Jurd and Matt Sheppard, who were outstanding in a losing side.
Queensland were first to put points on the board though in the 18th minute, through a drop ball mistake by New South Wales 10 metres out.
This then saw the Maroons swing the ball wide to winger Jake Sparey to score the first of his double for the afternoon.
A wayward cut out pass by New South Wales would have the Blues pay dearly, with Queensland centre Sam Collins taking a brilliant intercept in the 32nd minute, pinning the ears back to score under the posts, ending the run of points in the first half.
The Blues finally got on the board in the 45th minute, after some good lead up work by hooker Maverick Tweedie.
This saw the ball shift to the left, with powerful second rower Trent Peoples having some work to do in planting the ball over the line with the Queensland defence swarming in cover attack.
Torpy’s incredible vision saw an opportunity from 10 metres out from the New South Wales line, punching through a brilliant grubber kick that was fumbled by the Blues.
Collins made no mistake picking up the loose ball to score his second try of the afternoon.
Moments later, a quick look up at the defence from a Queensland scrum saw the Maroons drop the ball on the first tackle.
Some quick thinking by New South Wales' Royce Tout saw the lock forward scoop the ball up and race away to score a gift four points under the posts.
Further Queensland tries to Josh Rogers and another to winger Sparey edged the scoreline out further for the Maroons.
The Torpy show was still in progress when with 30 seconds left on the clock, he executed a brilliant inside ball to find Rogers who drew the fullback.
Hooker Jack Miers was then in support to go in for a well earned try and wrap up was a brutal but entertaining game.
Queensland coach Mark Gliddon was full of praise for fullback Torpy and Burleigh Bears' Rogers.
“I thought Torpy and Rogers were outstanding for us," Gliddon said.
”However, the whole side were courageous given the big New South Wales pack, but we held our own.”
A disappointed New South Wales coach Drew Dalton lamented on his chances his team had to score, but was still proud of their efforts.
“I think we were superb up the middle with our forwards, but in the end Queensland were too good out wide, making us pay with some silly errors," Dalton said.
An Australian Universities side will be announced today with the best players selected from both sides to tour Fiji in October; they will take on the New Zealand and Fijian Universities sides.