All the sinews in Cooper Cronk’s body have done it again.
If Wednesday night proves to be the veteran halfback’s State of Origin swansong, then he has left Queensland fans with a jaw-dropping moment to remember.
Cronk’s cross-field kick for Valentine Holmes’ second try in the 22-6 victory at Suncorp Stadium was pure perfection.
With the Maroons leading 6-0 just past the midway point of the first half, the 33-year-old reached into his bag of tricks and pulled out perhaps the best kick of his career.
Cronk was just five metres from Queensland’s tryline when he spotted Holmes on the left wing, having drifted a few metres off his marker, Blake Ferguson.
NSW players were expecting Cronk to take on the defensive line or dish off a pass but instead, he lowered his gaze and let rip with a precise drop punt.
It went 40 metres on an acute angle, stayed low and landed straight on Holmes’ chest – much to the bewilderment of the Blues, who seemed to have the life sucked out of them in an instant.
Cronk’s winning field goal in the 2012 series decider – the one where he famously said “every sinew in (his) body came together in one perfect whole” – might go down as his most important kick, but as far as technique goes, this one trumped it.
“It comes down to moments. Origin is about moments,” Cronk said.
“What anyone does on that field tonight and other big games, it’s about preparation, practice, repetition.
“Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
“As long as you’ve got more Maroon jerseys in the picture, it gives you an opportunity.”
It was certainly no fluke – Cronk said he had been working on the play with Queensland’s wingers throughout the entire series.
Indeed, Holmes looked like he knew exactly where he had to be.
“When you come into an environment like this, when you’ve got players from other clubs, it’s about fast-tracking them,” Cronk said.
“We did a little bit of work on that, not only this week but the first couple of games.
“I’m just glad it happened tonight.”