"You could have driven a truck through it."
He's not prone to hyperbole, but Collegians prop Josh Dowel swears that's how big the gap was.
He remembers it like it was yesterday, as does anyone who was at WIN Stadium to see Jarrod Boyle launch the all-or-nothing cut-out ball that sealed Collies' victory in the 2019 decider.
Dowel's still convinced he was robbed of the match-winner. Instead, with his side trailing Wests 14-10 with nine minutes left, he watched as it went whizzing by his eyes to land square on the chest of teammate Jiye Ellis centimetres inside the sideline chalk.
"I was running a lead for him and if he hit me short, I score," Dowel recalls.
"If you see the hole I go through there, you could've have put a truck through it, but I think he cut out four blokes with that ball. He had to go the big play."
Read more: All the stories that matter ahead of the Illawarra Rugby League grand finalNow that they're about to go head-to-head in opposing colours this weekend, he's also well attuned to the impact Boyle will have on the Thirroul dressing room.
"With Boyley in the side, he's going to hold everyone in that Thirroul outfit to a high standard," Dowel said.
"He just steers the ship so well and he gives the same lift that Thommo (Jarrod Thpmpson) and Butchy (Blake Phillips) give us. He's been there and done it, old head, knows the game inside and out and he'll have them ready to go."
It's a grand final moment that also sticks permanently in the mind of Dogs skipper Phillips, which is saying something given he's about to play in his seventh decider this weekend.
"Through the year he threw that exact pass for two intercepts for length of the field tries against Wests," Phillips said.
"They would've known it was coming, but he still had the guts to rip it out and he got that one right after two not going his way.
"It was at a point in the grand final where we had our backs against the wall and were looking around thinking 'where's it going to come from?' He stepped up and carried us through.
"It's definitely in the front of my mind [this week] what he can do at the clutch point of the game. Those clutch plays, they might not always come off but he'll go for it. He's the ultimate competitor."
While his former teammates remember the moment, it says a lot about Boyle's cerebral approach that he remembers the breakdown as much as the result.
"That pass was just predetermined," Boyle said.
"I remember for most of that match, their winger was coming up and in pretty hard. That's the way Wests defend, they're super aggressive.
"I just thought 'if I get it here, I'm just throwing it' knowing that they come up and in. I still remember that thought process.
"It's probably a one out of 10 pass to hit it on that money, but I just got lucky at that time. I was looking at nothing else."
Given the pass secured a third premiership, 16-10 over the Devils, you tend to think it came down to a little more than luck. The 2019 triumph was Boyle's second with Collegians, having also claimed the silverware in 2017.
That side also included Wayne Bremner, who'll line up at fullback for the Butchers on Saturday provided he overcomes a knee injury suffered in his side's prelim final win last week.
While they've become far more accustomed to winning, they graduated from a tough grand final school, having lost consecutive deciders in 2013-14 before breaking through.
That they're now looking to inflict the same grand final pain on each other close to a decade later is a convergence of journeys that makes for a fascinating showdown this weekend.
"It's pretty funny how things work," Boyle said.
"You just learn along the way and you learn a lot more from your losses than your wins. We made those three grand finals in a row to finally win one.
"We had a fairly young side with that bit of experience with Tower (Steve McCallum) and Grant Smith and guys like that, but we were probably trying too hard when were younger.
"The year before we won, the 2014 loss to Thirroul, probably sticks in my head more than the others. I lost one in 2011 to Wests when they had that awesome team, but I was super young then so it didn't really stick with me.
"In 2013 we lost by a field goal from 40 out, the next year we lost by two, but I think it made us appreciate the win more. Now, eight years later there's three or four of us in a grand final again. It just highlights how good that side was."
With the latter set to retire having yet to taste premiership success in the Illawarra competition since that afternoon in 2015, claiming a title in his best mate's last at-bat would be sweet for Boyle.
"That's what you dream of when you get towards the end of your career," Boyle said.
"As you get older, each one is more special because you know, you're getting closer to the end. It could very likely be your last one, especially with how strong the competition is.
"When you're younger, you don't think these (retirement) days will ever come. To win one together this late, that's all you can ask for.
"To go out on top and do it with one of your best mates, it doesn't get any better than that."
They'll need to slam the brakes on a Collegians behemoth chasing three straight titles, ironically a juggernaut Boyle largely set in motion.
One thing's for certain, Boyle won't die wondering; just ask Josh Dowel.
"Boyley just has to go the big play," Dowel says. "But the thing is, he can execute that big play too."
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