ALL roads may lead to Warrnambool's Reid Oval this Saturday but a prized piece of silverware will again be leaving town.
Panmure will return to the Reid Oval for the grand final after they walked off the ground on Saturday with a thrilling 17.4 (106) to 15.14 (104) preliminary final win over Dennington.
Panmure meets Kolora-Noorat in the grand final, meaning the premiership cup will go out of town for the fifth year in a row.
Expansion clubs have dominated since Timboon Demons won the 2008 flag, with Kolora-Noorat claiming the last three titles.
After a second semi-final loss to the Power, Panmure bounced back to top form to get over a gallant Dennington in a memorable preliminary final .
Fittingly, the game was played on the first day of spring and for the first time in months players were met with no rain, little wind and a firm surface under foot.
The big crowd had some action to cheer on in the first minute when Panmure's Chris Bant converted from a free kick to give the Bulldogs a flying start.
Dennington answered soon after through a goal from Alex Pye before the game settled, with both teams spending the next 10 minutes working each other out.
A goal from Dennington's Levi Geebung broke the stand- off and set off a flurry of goals from both sides.
Geebung and Shane Graham were giving Dennington an edge through the middle and Darcy Lewis and Chris Keilar were worthy forward targets. Geebung's goal was one of a run of five for Dennington, while Panmure coach Simon O'Keefe was single-handedly keeping his team in the game with two goals during the same period. At quarter-time Dennington had slipped away to a 22- point lead.
Panmure needed to get moving and it was veteran Murray Ellerton who started the ball rolling with an early second-quarter goal.
This seemed to spark the Bulldogs as they started to win out of the centre through Adam O'Keefe, Shaun Griffin and Tom Wright getting on top.
Key forwards Chris Bant and Gary Robinson were proving hard for Dennington to handle as Panmure produced a seven-goal-to-two quarter to take an unlikely four-point half-time lead.
No one at Reid Oval was in doubt that they were witnessing a special final, with both teams playing for keeps.
Dennington made the early second-half running with three of the first four goals before Panmure turned that around to kick three of the last four for the quarter.
Going into the last quarter Panmure was in possession of a five-point lead and when Chris Bant goaled at the four- minute mark that had drifted out to 10 points.
But the inspirational Lewis dragged his team back into the contest with two marks and goals to earn a four-point lead for his team.
The crowd was now on its feet and in full voice and Robinson rose to the occasion with a big pack mark and goal from 50 metres to give Panmure a two-point lead at the 20-minute mark.
Dennington stole back the lead two minutes later with a goal from Keilar before Bant took a contested grab, went back and converted a long goal to give a two-point advantage to the Bulldogs.
Dennington won the next centre clearance and the ball ended in the hands of Luke Duncan at 45 metres out from goal. As Duncan went back to line up the siren sounded and the big crowd held its breath.
The distance proved just beyond the Dennington forward, with the ball dropping in the goal square to give Panmure a thrilling victory in a memorable final.