With 15 minutes left on Friday night, the Raiders were spent and needed a hero.
Clinging to a slender four-point lead, Canberra's right-side defence was unlocked and Josh Morris looked destined to score in the corner.
Enter Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad, who less than 10 minutes earlier was writhing in agony at the hands of the trainer desperately trying to alleviate leg cramp.
In the midst of arguably his best ever NRL game, Nicoll-Klokstad skipped across the field and collared Morris into touch, saving a try and the match.
"He obviously won us the game there tonight with a few try savers, they're the efforts that no one sees outside of our little group," Josh Papalii said.
"It's his job to do that. He trains hard, he puts in the hours, no one sees the hard work he puts in.
"He's always first one on the field and always the last one off. The way he plays it just complements the way he trains.
"We've always got the belief that Charnze has another gear. I really think he'll have a big game next week as well."
The New Zealand international ran for 253m, was flawless under the high ball and saved two certain tries.
His other telling contribution came before half-time when Morris's twin brother Brett was hunting the try line.
Nicoll-Klokstad not only stopped Brett in his tracks, he held him up long enough for Canberra's defensive line to recover, and cleaned up a Joseph Manu grubber on the next play.
He finished the game banged up, much like he was six days earlier against the Cronulla Sharks, but will be wrapped up in cotton wool this week ahead of Friday's preliminary final against the Melbourne Storm.
The 25-year-old wasn't Canberra's only unsung hero on a bruising night at the SCG. Hudson Young was asked during the week by Ricky Stuart to start at prop, and he delivered a Herculean 57-minute stint before being thrown back on in the dying stages.
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"Stick [Stuart] just keeps it nice and simple for me, to run hard and tackle hard and just to bring energy for the boys," Young said. "I take that stuff pretty personal, when he sets you a task you try and do it the best you can.
"It was a fast game because I didn't play finals footy obviously last year. I'm still knew to this and seeing the boys exhausted it just goes to show how hard we work for each other and that we'll do anything to win."
Stuart's decision to start Young at prop alongside Papalii proved a masterstroke.
Papalii was replaced by veteran Sia Soliola about 28 minutes in, at the same time Dunamis Lui replaced try scorer Joseph Tapine. Moments later Tom Starling came on for Siliva Havili to inject some freshness around the ruck.
"I live with Tommy so I couldn't be more stoked with him, I kept telling him your time will come mate, you're only one injury away," Young said. "His time's here and he's killing it. He's always had it in him and he just needed that opportunity."