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Nathan Cleary's last-gasp 40-metre field goal called the ‘greatest clutch play ever seen’

Max Sherry

| Last updated 

Nathan Cleary's last-gasp 40-metre field goal called the ‘greatest clutch play ever seen’

Nathan Cleary produced one of the most iconic moments in recent rugby league history.

The Penrith Panthers star slotted a field goal in the dying embers of the game to send the clash against the Parramatta Eels into golden point.

But this wasn't just any old field goal attempt.

No, with the clock ticking down, Clearly buried the kick from about 40 metres out – not far from the half-way line, if truth be told.


But while the Panthers ended up losing, Cleary's moment of individual brilliance has been labelled the "greatest clutch play I’ve ever seen in rugby league".

With the scores locked at 16-12 in favour of the Eels, the Panthers needed a miracle if you hoped to tie things up.

Enter Nathan Cleary.


Baring in mind, Penrith had been largely dominated for much of the game and didn't particularly deserve to take the tie into golden point.

But their star halfback didn't care about all that.

With just eight seconds left on the clock - and with Eels players breathing down his neck - Cleary effortlessly rifled through the ball before watching it sail between the posts at CommBank Stadium.

The stadium erupted as Cleary was mobbed by his teammates.


In the Fox League commentary box, Andrew Voss was going absolutely mental too.

"A two-point field goal, the like of which we haven't seen before," he yelled.

"This, my friends, is the greatest sport ever invented!"


When footage of the kick flooded social media, it instantly went viral.

Speaking on Fox League’s The Late Show after the match, the panel couldn't believe what they were witnessing.

“How demoralising (for the Eels), down to twelve men, we had Junior Paulo who was sent to the sin bin, twelve,” Johns said on Fox League’s The Late Show.

“Nathan Cleary, that is just about the greatest clutch play I’ve ever seen in rugby league.”


Former Parramatta Eels player Nathan Hindmarsh noticed something else going on in the crowd too.

“You even saw the Parra fans clapping, that’s how good it was, it was an extraordinary effort,” Hindmarsh added.

“When this kick went over, credit to Parramatta because I was worried that they were going to get deflated and not turn up in that extra time bit.

“Especially with one man down... well done to the boys.”

Featured Image Credit: Twitter/Fox League

Topics: Australia, NRL, Rugby League

Max Sherry
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