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Nail-biting end to Jets and Capras draw

A remarkable try-saving tackle from Ipswich Jets winger Ratu Jope Rotavisoro in the dying seconds has seen the Central Queensland Capras record their second draw of the season at Browne Park.

After the Capras led 16-2 for nearly 60 minutes of the contest, the Jets clawed their way back into the contest and looked to have sealed the comeback when Josh Cleeland knocked over a field goal in the 77th minute.

However, the Capras got the ball back from the kick off and from the ensuing set, the ever calm Jack Madden stepped up to level the game with less than two minutes left to play.

A penalty to the Capras off the short kick off gifted the home side one final set to try and register their first win of the season.

With only seconds left on the clock, Madden’s field goal attempt was charged down but the ball ricocheted off legs straight into the path of a flying Jack Gibbons, who looked certain to score only to be brought down inches from the try line in one of the all-time try savers by Jets winger Ratu Jope Rotavisoro.

As the Jets scrambled to organise their defensive line, Capras rake Liam Horne opted for the all-or-nothing play and tried to barge over from dummy half, only to be held up for what was the final play of the game.

The Capras started the first half with plenty of energy, opening the scoring through Raeden Robinson courtesy of some click passing from fullback Blake Moore in the fifth minute.

They then extended their lead to 14-points heading into halftime, when Troye Browne spotted an overlap to his right and quickly fired a pass to Jack Gibbons who crashed over.

The Jets came roaring back into the contest in the second half, with tries to Ono So’oialo and Josh Cleeland in the space of 10 minutes, setting up the grandstand finish.

While they weren’t able to notch their first win of the season, Capras head coach Guy Williams still credited his team’s ability to give themselves a chance to win the game at the death.

“It’s certainly a tough one to take, I thought we might have just scraped home in the last moments, but it just wasn’t the case,” Williams said.

“It could’ve been a time where we dropped our heads when we were down by one, but they scrambled to get the footy back off the short kick off.

“Jack did a great job at icing that first field goal and while we had another opportunity, we just couldn’t do the same.”

Williams said the hard lessons learnt from these close games will ultimately make the team stronger and more equipped to handle the big moments moving forward.

“It’s about using these games to develop an ability to recognise those moments in future games and how to handle them better and be able to win them, to know what the moment takes,” the Capras coach said.

“Liam Horne was the dummy half there and tried to barge over and gets held up but if he gets that down and scores a try, we are all cheering and he’s come up with a big play.

“I want my players to be confident and I want them to back their ability and trust their instincts.”

Williams said his side must now try and bottle what they did in the opening forty and extend it for the whole game moving forward.

“It’s about extending what we are doing at the start of games and pushing and extending that effort to the full 80 minutes," Williams said.

“The guys compete really hard its just our execution and consistency through matches that needs to keep improving.”

The Capras will now turn their attention to their upcoming match against the Redcliffe Dolphins at Browne Park next Saturday.

Meanwhile, the Jets will face the Sunshine Coast Falcons at North Ipswich Reserve.

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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