The Doyalson Dragons are now one title away from achieving a historic state touch football clean sweep this season.
A maiden State Cup trophy at Port Macquarie in December would be all the Dragons need to complete an already successful 2017 campaign after claiming their first Vawdon Cup in Sydney on Saturday.
With one minute remaining Doyalson’s Clay Studdon dashed 40 metres to score the match winner and defeat favoured minor premiers the Parramatta Eels 4-3 in the NSW Premier League men’s grand final.
The most recent victory follows triumphs at the NSW Country Championships in Dubbo and Hunter Western Regional Championships in Maitland during October.
“If we win State Cup we win all four tournaments and that’s never ever been done in the sport by anyone,” proud Dragons coach Karley Banks said.
“It’s a real bit of history inviting us to have a real crack at it and everyone’s really keen.”
Banks said it was a “dream come true” for “tiny Hunter affiliate” Doyalson to clinch the prestigious metropolitan-based Vawdon Cup, especially over the “11-time champions” with a “star-studded” line-up.
“It was a pretty special moment and one that we’ll all remember for a long time,” Banks said.
It was the Dragons’ first appearance in the decider after four years travelling down the freeway for the weekly competition and Dylan Thompson opened the scoring.
Doyalson’s 1-0 half-time advantage was doubled before the Eels hit back. Daniel Langbridge then extended the margin again before Parramatta struck twice and leveled. Studdon crossed late to seal the result.
Jake Fitzpatrick was named player of the final.