The Warriors 2015 NRL campaign ended in disappointment but Nathan Friend's extraordinary acrobatic effort against Melbourne Storm provided a rare highlight that drew global attention.

The diminutive hooker's back-flip between-the-legs pass helped set-up a memorable try for wing Tui Lolohea and sent fans, commentators, and complete strangers to the game, into raptures.

Normally considered one of the more industrious and less flamboyant members of the Warriors lineup, Friend surprised everyone when he leapt into the air to defuse a Chad Townsend bomb.

While claiming the ball in mid-air, Friend's lower body came into contact with the back of Storm defender Kenny Bromwich, which sent him tumbling perilously backwards towards the turf.


Somehow, while upside down, he managed to calmly deliver the ball between his legs and land safely, while an exchange between Sam Tomkins and Shaun Johnson stalled the defence and quick hands sent Lolohea in to score in the corner.

"I guess we were lucky it hit one of our guys," was Friend's typically low-key response. "It might not have been that fantastic if it was a runaway try!

"I went up for the ball, contested it and I was fortunate that all those days on the trampoline with my boys came good. That's fatherhood!

"I was worried about getting the ball away because I knew it was the last tackle. There was a lot to be done and it was lucky I threw it so Shauny."

Video of the backflip quickly went viral and American sports channel ESPN rated the feat good enough to place it top of its Plays of the Day segment, and the likes of Sports Illustrated and Bleacher Report helped it reach worldwide audiences.

The Warriors moved quickly to produce a special one-off 'backflip jersey' autographed by Friend which sold on Trade Me for $3110, but the memory of the incident will live forever.

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