SKIPPER Barry Padgham proved the saviour as Koroit Blue celebrated a breakthrough Western District Bowls Division Saturday pennant triumph.
The division one newcomer defeated Warrnambool Blue 91-89 in a match which went down to the wire at Koroit.
Koroit Blue trailed by two shots with three of the four rinks completed and was on track for a narrow loss.
But Padgham and his teammates produced heroics on the last two ends against Neville Lynch to snatch a memorable triumph.
They picked up five shots on the second-last end, to turn the deficit into a three-shot advantage.
Padgham then iced the win by sending down two bowls which made it near-impossible for Lynch to pick up more than one shot.
Koroit Blue skipper Shane Cashill said the dramatic finale had both sides on edge.
“The last end, we were holding shots and Phil Hawker — the third for Neville Lynch — played a really good shot and got the kitty in the ditch,” he said.
“They were holding three, which would’ve been a draw. Barry then played two good shots and cut it to one.
“Neville had to play something unbelievable to get the win but couldn’t.”
Padgham defeated Lynch 26-22 and Cashill beat Bryan Sheehan 28-24 in Koroit Blue’s two rink wins.
But Peter Kampman lost 26-19 to Tom Pemberton and Glenn Keane lost to Dennis Berriman 27-18.
Cashill lauded the fight of his teammates.
Koroit Blue rushed to an early lead, the benefits of using a green few opponents had played on in recent years.
But Warrnambool Blue cut the deficit the longer the match went on and were in the box seat late in the afternoon.
“There were only a couple of shots in it for the last seven or eight ends across every rink,” Cashill said.
“Glenn was the first to finish and he dropped a seven on the last end. That put us almost 10 behind.
“Then we clawed it back.
‘‘I had three ends to go, Peter had four to go and Barry had five to go.”
In other Saturday pennant matches, Warrnambool White snatched a thrilling two-rinks-all, 83-81 win against Terang Green at Timor Street.
The triumph could prove vital in the long run for a side hoping to avoid relegation.
Port Fairy Red got its season off to a flyer with a 116-83 victory against Timboon Gold at Port Fairy, winning three rinks and drawing the fourth.
And City Memorial Red accounted for Dennington three rinks to one, 98-73 at Cramer Street.