A KICK to win the championship – it is the high-pressured moment most goal-kickers dream of having.
And it was that long-held desire which turned reality for Ryan Lamb who was faced with a kick to secure his side a place in the Aviva Premiership.
With no time left and with Worcester Warriors’ trailing 58-57 to Bristol on aggregate, a packed-out Sixways fell eerily silent as Lamb lined up his conversion.
For some in the crowd and on the pitch, including Worcester scrum half JB Bruzlier, the pressure was too much to bear.
“I just looked down and prayed for it to go over,” he said.
Despite so much riding on the kick, Chris Pennell, who scored the try to leave Lamb with a responsibility of taking the match-winning conversion, said the fly half had the air of somebody who was not going to miss.
“I looked at him and saw confidence, which was great,” he said.
And sure enough Lamb held his nerve to send Sixways faithful into delirium and leave Bristol, who had led 30-16 with ten minutes to go, heartbroken.
“That’s the reason why you are a kicking,” Lamb said. “You want to put yourself on the line and you want to take the glory at the end.
“That’s my job, so it was nice to put it over for the lads.”
Lamb may have been confident of slotting home the decisive two points, but there was reason for others to doubt him, especially after his disappointing display from the tee at Ashton Gate.
And the 29-year-old thanked former England stand-off Paul Grayson who has acted as his kicking mentor since he arrived at Warriors, for helping him to prepare for the second leg.
“I have never kicked that badly in my life,” he added. “I spoke to Paul Grayson who has been absolutely fantastic with me all year.
“The three weeks before that I was kicking the ball really nicely, but you have those off days.
“I did not doubt myself, though, and I am just glad it went over.”