Super Rugby: Bernard Foley helps the Waratahs battle back from 24-10 down
Last Updated: 24/03/13 9:26am
Bernard Foley kicked a penalty after the final siren had sounded to give the Waratahs a thrilling 30-27 win over the Blues at Allianz Stadium.
The fly-half, only handed the kicking duties due to an injury to scrum-half Brendan McKibbin, held his nerve to complete a superb comeback from the hosts, who had at one stage trailed 24-10 in New South Wales.
The Blues had hit the front in the third minute through a Chris Noakes penalty but the Waratahs responded almost immediately with a fine handling move that was finished off by recalled winger Drew Mitchell.
A see-saw opening half went back towards the visitors when Culum Retallick swooped on a loose ball to set up a breakaway score for hooker James Parsons.
Although McKibbin levelled matters with a penalty, the Blues caught their opponents cold with two tries in the space of three minutes around the half-hour mark.
Noakes grabbed the first, which he also converted, and then McKibbin's replacement Matt Lucas fumbled a Piri Weepu kick, leading to Charles Piutau going over the line.
But the Waratahs rallied from a 14-point half-time deficit to get back on level terms, Foley himself getting a try after former rugby league star Folau had touched down.
Both franchises traded penalties and it looked likely to finish as a draw until Retallick was punished for being offside in extra time, allowing Foley to step up and be the hero.
The victory lifts the Waratahs from fifth to third in the Australian Conference, while the Blues are level with Crusaders on 16 points in a share for second in the New Zealand conference.