The Queensland Reds have broken a nine-year losing drought in Sydney and have retained the Bob Templeton Cup, following some last minute heroics by wing Dom Shipperley to secure a memorable 25-21 victory over the Waratahs.
Shipperley outstripped the Waratahs' defence to run in the Reds' only try and fight back from 15-21 down with 13 minutes left.
Up until Shipperley's last-ditch intervention, the Waratahs had looked to be getting the upper hand after South African scrumhalf Sarel Pretorius's try on his debut had put the home side in front with their second try.
But the Reds, badly missing the attacking spark of sidelined Wallaby flyhalf Quade Cooper, somehow found a way to score a try that had threatened to elude them for the whole game.
Although jubilant to have pinched a fiercely-fought Australian derby in Sydney, the Reds were pragmatic about their performance.
"We gusted it out, we didn't play that well," the Reds' Wallaby skipper James Horwill said.
"We created some opportunities early, but the Waratahs put a lot of pressure on us at the breakdown, we were a bit sloppy with the ball and we have plenty to work on.
"Anytime you win against the Waratahs is very sweet and the fact we've done it down here [in Sydney] where we haven't done for a long time makes it that much sweeter."
Reds coach Ewen McKenzie was obviously delighted that his team had broken their drought.
"We hadn't won down in Sydney since 2003, so the group is really pleased with the outcome," McKenzie said.
"We never thought we were out of the contest and we always back ourselves to produce something. You need someone to stand up and in the end Shipperley finished the business. He is the fastest guy in the squad and it showed.
"The team will now travel to Brisbane tomorrow and get ready for the Force next week. We've got almost 30,000 members so we can't wait to play in front of our home supporters for the first time in 2012."
The Reds captain, Horwill, said he was pleased the side managed to once again produce a big play at a key moment in a match.
"The good teams find a way to win. We did that and got a result," Horwill said.
"You always need something or someone special to break the deadlock and one team has to crack. We've now got out first win in Sydney since 2003 and we retain the Templeton Cup. It has been a successful trip."
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