The Sydney Roosters have been pipped within the final minute of the game, going down to the Melbourne Storm 17-16 in a thriller at AAMI Park on Saturday night.
Both teams traded tries in the final three minutes before Storm halfback Cronk kicked the winning field goal inside the 79th minute in front of 12,860 fans.
It was a rugby league masterclass from both sides who showed incredible skill in wet conditions, committing just 10 errors between them to finish with completion rates above 90 per cent.
After a blistering start by the Roosters it was Melbourne who opened the scoring in the 14th minute via their winger Marika Koroibete who leaped above Roger Tuivasa-Sheck to catch an aerial bomb.
The Roosters dominated the next 20 minutes of play and Mitchell Aubusson who scored the Roosters first try.
Roosters five-eighth James Maloney played a sharp assist to Aubusson who put the Tricolours ahead 6-4.
The following kick-off went over the dead-ball line and two penalty goals from Maloney would follow for the Roosters who extended their lead to six by the 27-minute mark.
Melbourne hit back in the 38th minute and the teams headed into the sheds with scores locked at 10-10, with just a single incomplete set and handling error between the sides despite the persistent rain.
Following the restart the Roosters were largely on the attack for the opening 20 minutes of the second half but were unsuccessful in crossing the line.
In a night of end-to-end action, the Roosters nearly had their noses in front moments after the Storm were ruled to lose the ball over the line while grounding. Roosters winger Nene Macdonald appeared to have a try beckoning down the right touchline only to be pushed out wide by Storm players Kurt Mann and Cameron Munster.
With eight minutes to play, a penalty put Melbourne in striking distance, and a cross-field play ended up in the hands of Storm centre Will Chambers who charged through the Roosters' left edge to score. Smith secured the sideline conversion for the 16-10 lead.
But this game was so good it needed another twist.
A tap-back from towering winger Daniel Tupou recovered possession from the Roosters off a short kick-off, and moments later Tupou was over in the corner after taking a perfect cut-out pass from Maloney.
Maloney then stepped up as Smith had done with his own high-pressure conversion from the sideline to once again level the scores.
Boyd Cordner charged down the Storm’s first attempt at field-goal via Cooper Cronk however the Storm halfback recovered the ball as the home side received a repeat set and with 45 seconds of play remaining on the clock, Cronk took a second attempt that was successful and resulted in the Roosters being defeated 17-16.
The Roosters now turn their attention to the club’s traditional ANZAC Day match against the St George Illawarra Dragons, in Round 8 NRL action, on Saturday, April 25 at Allianz Stadium
Melbourne Storm 17 (Marika Koroibete, Felise Kaufusie, Will Chambers tries; Cameron Smith 2 goals; Cooper Cronk field goal) def. Sydney Roosters 16 (Mitchell Aubusson, Daniel Tupou tries; James Maloney 4 goals). Crowd: 12,860.