By Tara Murray
Gisborne Red is starting to hit its straps in the Central Highlands Bowls top division.
The two-time reigning premier began the season slowly, but after eight rounds is inside the top two.
The side upset ladder leader Kyneton Golf on Saturday.
In a thrilling match, Gisborne Red only just got across the line, winning
98 (14)-92 (4).
Matthew Bacon and Graham Quaife continued their unbeaten season for Gisborne, while Ricky Turner and Adrian Plowman were the winning skips for Kyneton Golf.
Gisborne skip Tim Rogers said his side was fortunate to get the win.
“They led pretty much all day and we got a few numbers late,” he said.
“They had a number of players pull out and they were undermanned.”
Rogers said Quaife had been a steadying influence and that the side had started to find form after struggling early in the season.
He said having two sides in the top grade had meant some fiddling around.
“We had a few blokes who hadn’t been able to do a pre-season, so they started the season in the yellow team,” he said.
“We also had a couple of players leave the club in the last few weeks, so we’ve had players coming in.”
Rogers said Matthew Bacon, Sam Rogers and Ethan Higgins were among the players whose form was on the rise.
On Sunday, Higgins beat Rogers in the CHBD singles final. The two will this week play in Gisborne’s club championship.
Matthew Bacon and Craig Evans won the CHBD pairs title last month, beating Gisborne team mates Tim Rogers and Darren Fletcher.
The win against Kyneton Golf on Saturday moves Gisborne Red up to second, while Golf slipped from first to third. Bacchus Marsh, which won all 18 points against Gisborne Yellow, is back on top. Only three points separate second to third.
Rogers said it was the closest competition he had seen in recent years.
With that in mind, he said finishing top two and getting the double chance was even more vital.
In other results, Lancefield upset Kyneton 87 (16)-81 (2) and Romsey beat Trentham 96 (16)-90 (2).