Runs on the board will be worth the weight of gold in Saturday's Warrnambool and District association qualifying finals, according to West Warrnambool skipper Ben Threlfall.
He said the group was proud to have qualified but knew the work was in front of them.
"It's a great feeling, we're really proud and just super excited," he said.
"It's been a bit of a tough year, especially with all those washouts at the starts and missed games. It felt like a long pre-season so to be playing finals is what you play for and the boys can't wait."
In finals, if you can bat first and post a decent score it does go a long way to winning.- Ben Threlfall
The Panthers face Mortlake at Jetty Flat for a spot in the semi-finals and with both teams playing out several grinding and low-scoring affairs, particularly since Christmas and the introduction of the red-ball, the gun batsman expects the cut-throat clash to deliver similar results.
Since resuming on January 14 from the end of year break, the Panthers have won four of their six matches but ball has largely dominated bat.
Threlfall believes a run of 'tough' matches will hold his group in good stead when under pressure with the bat.
"It's been a common theme this year, batting has been hard at times with pitches being tough to bat on," he said.
"With rain around it might be a bit bowler friendly again this week. I haven't played on Jetty Flat for a while but I expect it to be a decent wicket. It's smaller boundaries square of the wicket which helps batters a bit, but we expect another grind.
"In finals, if you can bat first and post a decent score it does go a long way to winning. You've just got to adapt to the conditions and hope one of your top-order can get in and get you a big score.
"We certainly need a few more guys contributing with the bat, but it's the old cliche, runs are really important in finals."
While a strong pace battery will look to take early wickets again a Mortlake top-order featuring Todd Lamont, Lachlan Wareham, Clinton Baker and Neil Kelly, the Panthers' spinners in Justin Snow, Joe Douglas and Brock Gannon could hold the key, especially through the middle period.
Teenager Douglas in particular has been a revelation in his first full season of division one cricket, snaring 11 wickets at an average of 16.
"They've been awesome for us this year, especially playing at the Davidson, our home ground being a bigger ground," he said. "The thing with those guys is it's not just about taking wickets it's about keeping the run-rate down.
"It sort of helps other bowlers when they can build the pressure with dot balls and wickets. Jetty Flat is a different ground but they'll be a huge asset for us."
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