The SUNS have gone down to Carlton in a thrilling contest 13.13 (91) to 13.9 (87).

SUNS v BLUES Full match coverage and stats

Gold Coast led by 40 points in the second term, but a run of seven consecutive goals either side of half-time let the Blues back into the contest. 

The second half turned into an arm-wrestle, but Noah Anderson missed a 45m shot from a stoppage with 35 seconds left before Sean Lemmens' long inside 50 bomb from the SUNS' final surge was plucked by Carlton at the top of the goal square, enabling them to wind down the clock. 

Gold Coast was brilliantly led by reformed half-forward David Swallow who kicked a career-best four goals, along with the tireless Sam Flanders (36 disposals), Touk Miller (29 disposals and a goal) and Jarrod Witts (38 hitouts).

Carlton appeared in holiday mode early on the Gold Coast as the SUNS piled on six goals to one in the first term.

Flanders had 13 disposals by quarter-time, while Swallow and Alex Sexton, who was back in the SUNS' side for the first time since round 14, booted two goals each with the SUNS producing some sizzling football on the rebound.

Jack Lukosius' goal at the six-minute mark of the second term opened up a 40-point lead, before Curnow turned it on, kicking the next three majors for the game, out-marking Charlie Ballard for his third.

The Blues claimed the lead for the first time two minutes after the restart from Jesse Motlop's snap, but were wasteful in the third with 1.7, allowing the SUNS to remain in the contest and re-claim the lead at the final change after Swallow's third goal.

Gold Coast kicked five of the next six goals after Motlop's major, leading by 13 points with 13 minutes remaining after Mabior Chol's goal.

But Carlton rallied again, with ex-SUN Jack Martin managing his second, before Curnow marked and played on in trademark style to goal from 50m out to cut the margin to one point. Curnow's dart set up McKay to put the Blues ahead before Matt Owies converted a set shot to open up an 11-point lead.

Gold Coast, however, wouldn’t surrender, with Bailey Humphrey finding Ellis to cut the margin to five points, but Anderson spurned his late chance, while Curnow intercepted from Lemmens' hopeful final push.

GOLD COAST    6.5    7.7   9.7    13.9 (87)
CARLTON         1.2    7.5   8.12   13.13 (91)
Gold Coast: Swallow 4, Ainsworth 2, Sexton 2, Chol, Ellis, Lukosius, Miller, Rosas
Carlton: C.Curnow 5, Martin 2, Motlop 2, Owies 2, Cottrell, McKay

Gold Coast:
 Flanders, Swallow, Witts, Miller, Rowell, Ainsworth, Andrew 
Carlton: C.Curnow, Hewett, Newman, Fisher, Acres, Docherty, Weitering

Gold Coast: Nil
Carlton: Nil

Gold Coast: Darcy Macpherson (replaced Lloyd Johnston in the fourth quarter)
Carlton: Ed Curnow (replaced David Cuningham at three-quarter time)