By Richard Millott
Knox Gardens swooped on the final ball of its match against Upwey to claim points as Round 5 concluded on Saturday.
Set 244 from last week by the Tigers, the Falcons led from the top with Peter Dunlop reaching 60 to put the score at 2/91 in the 30th over.
Josh Gregory (42) and Mitch Gregory (30) teamed up well to continue the chase which tightened as the visitors needed 11 from the final over.
With a single required from the final ball, Josh McGowan finished the match with a boundary to claim the points at 9/248.
The win sets the Falcons up nicely, now into third place separated only on percentage ahead of Sunday’s T20 match against Johnson Park.
Meanwhile Upwey will look to add to the account against The Basin to lift from 8th place.
Lysterfield returned to the winners list with victory over Eildon Park.
Set 207 to claim the points, Nathan Walsh (102*) came to the crease at 2/20 and teamed up with Josh Bundy (43*).
The partnership saw the Beavers successfully complete the chase at 5/120.
Aaron Brunner returned to form with yet another century for the collection, however, the effort couldn’t help Belgrave over the line as Ferntree Gully Footballers claimed the points.
Brunner led from the top in a clinical display combining with Jarrod McPhee (54) for a 138-run opening stand in chase of the Griffens’ mammoth 5/296.
However, Nick Bogar found a way with the ball to maintain the Griffens in the game, his 3/47 helping restrict the Pies to 9/233 by day’s end.
Brunner was dismissed for 116, reflective of an impressive start to the season which has returned 509 runs (including 4 centuries) at an average of 127.25 with half the season still to play.
Johnson Park came close to causing a big upset against Knoxfield, as the Knights won with one wicket in hand.
The Knights set out after the Sharks’ 204, falling to 2/24 early before Luke Scanlan (68) and Trent Scholfield (48) took charge of adding the required runs.
With both back in the rooms at 4/146, the Sharks struck back to claim three quick wickets and stall the chase.
Another wicket-taking spree created an exciting finish with scores tied with one wicket in hand before the Knights wrapped up the match with two overs to spare.
Panduka Paranamanage led the way with the ball, his 4/61 the highlight as the Knights reached 9/208.
The Basin jumped into second with a comprehensive win against Upper Ferntree Gully.
The Bears set 9/207 last week and their quality bowling unit swung into gear at the hands of Joey Hawke (5/34) and Nick Freeling (3/18).
The Kings were unable to find a way to re-enter the contest and were dismissed for 125.
In Decoite Shield, Mountain Gate (193) held on in a nail-biting affair against Olinda (189) to register the opening win of the campaign.
Ferntree Gully (282) are now two matches clear on top after accounting for Monbulk (176).
In other games, Knox Gardens jumped into third after seeing off St Johns Tecoma and Rowville claimed its second win of the season against South Belgrave.