Gold Coast young guns Ben King and Izak Rankine both missed potential match-winning chances as the Suns and Essendon played out an AFL draw in Carrara.
- The result was the second draw of the AFL season
- The Suns rallied late to level scores after the Bombers took the lead during the fourth quarter
- David Zaharakis kicked three goals for the Bombers but sustained a quad injury
King kicked a point from a set shot to level scores, while Rankine could not find a score inside the final minute from outside 50 as the match finished 11.7 (73) to 11.7 (73).
The Bombers looked like winners after hitting the front in the final term following back-to-back goals by David Zaharakis, but a King goal with five minutes to go set up a blockbuster finish.
The result is the second draw of the season after Richmond and Collingwood could not be separated in the AFL restart back in June.
Zaharakis finished with three goals but also injured his quad kicking his final major to finish the match on the bench.
James Stewart, in his third match of the season, also kicked three goals for the Bombers.
King had two goals for the Suns, as did Lachie Weller and Sam Day.
Kyle Langford kicked two majors for Essendon, including a fourth-quarter effort that put the Bombers ahead in the final term.
Zach Merrett topped the possession charts with 31 disposals with Andrew McGrath (26), Dylan Shiel (26), Jordan Ridley (23) and Darcy Parish (20) all getting more touches than the Suns’ highest possession winner in Hugh Greenwood (18).
Suns defender Charlie Ballard claimed 10 intercept marks, while Parish and William Snelling epitomised the Bombers’ pressure with eight and seven tackles respectively.
The result moves Essendon to ninth place on the ladder with 22 points from 10 matches.
The Suns, who had lost three straight matches heading into this match, sit 12th with 18 points from 11 matches.
The Bombers next face St Kilda on Sunday at the Gabba. The Suns take on Richmond at the same venue on Monday.