ONE shot was all that separated perennial finalists Warrnambool Gold and City Memorial Red in their Western District Bowls division semi-final.
Today they meet in the division one grand final at Dennington.
It will add another chapter to the two teams’ long and decorated rivalry.
City Red is aiming for a hat-trick of flags, having beaten Warrnambool Gold in the past two grand finals.
The unbeaten Warrnambool Gold side has defeated City red three times this season.
It had a four-shot win in round eight, a thumping 47-shot win in round 17 and edged home 95-94 in a semi-final thriller two weeks ago.
City Memorial Red skipper Tim Jackway said Warrnambool Gold deserved its favourite status.
Jackway said it was important not to over-complicate the game.
“It comes down to the actual day, that’s what I have found in grand finals,” he said.
“Analysing what has happened in the past doesn’t help much.
“It was on our home ground last year. This time its on a neutral ground at Dennington.”
City Red returned to form with a 124-61 preliminary final win against club-mate City Gold to earn another premiership attempt.
“Since I have been playing, this is my 14th or 15th grand final,” Jackway said.
“It is still a grand final. The two best sides usually make it so it doesn’t take the shine off it at all. We love to play against them and there is respect between the two sides.”
Warrnambool Gold third Glen McNaughton, who has played in eight grand finals for four flags, said last year’s grand final loss was a distant memory.
McNaughton said Gold took strong form into the decider. “We need to keep the pressure on them I think,” he said.
“Our side should handle the pressure well. A grand final is always a pressure game especially if it is a close game.
“Hopefully it brings out the best in us.”
In other grades, Koroit will attempt a hat-trick of flags. Koroit Blue plays City Memorial Green in division two, Koroit White clashes with Timboon Maroon in division three and Koroit Green meets Timboon Red in division four.