Watch: This agonising, fingertip knock-on proved decisive in epic State of Origin Test

Queensland made it 10 series wins from the last 11 but New South Wales had them rattled in the latter stages.

STATE OF ORIGIN is known for its brutal, high-octane drama but today’s Test match in Brisbane delivered in spades, even by those traditionally high standards.

The annual three-Test rugby league series between inter-state rivals Queensland and New South Wales has been dominated by the Maroons in recent years and a 26-16 win in Brisbane today gave them an unassailable 2-0 series lead heading into the deciding Test in three weeks’ time. That makes it 10 wins in the last 11 years for the Sunshine State.

But it could have been so different.

The epic Suncorp Stadium encounter was typically low-scoring early on but burst into life via the electric finishing of 25-year-old Queensland winger Dane Gagai, whose hat-trick saw Kevin Walters’ side establish a 20-10 lead with less than 15 minutes to play.

Gagai’s first came from this scorching break and brave finish after NSW lost possession:

He showed incredible hands to finish his second:

And he was in perfect position to get on the end of a delightful kick from Jonathan Thurston for his third:

But a Jimmy Maloney breakaway try under the Queensland sticks got the underdogs back within four points with more than 10 minutes still on the clock.

Queensland looked rattled and on their next meaningful attacking set, NSW seemed to have snatched the lead, and somehow be on their way to an unlikely victory, when Tyson Fizzell appeared score his second try of the day when he got his hands on a Maloney grubber.

But the replay revealed an agonising, fingertip knock-on from Blues centre Michael Jennings just before Fizzell got downward pressure on the ball.

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An experienced Queensland side responded in typically efficient fashion, led by their outrageously talented five-eighth, Johnathan Thurston, to eventually seal a 26-16 victory through this beautiful move, finished off by wing Corey Oates, on 72 minutes.

The final game of the series takes place in Sydney on July 13.

Source: Rugby League TV/YouTube

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