CENTRAL Wendouree has earned promotion back to the premier division after an electrifying two-shot victory over City Oval in the Ballarat District Bowls division one grand final today.
In an unbelievably tense clash more than worthy of a division one grand final, the Bears snuck home to a two-shot victory, winning 87-85.
With just one shot separating the two sides after 99 ends, it was the rink led be Col Johnson that showed nerves of steel in front of hundreds of onlookers.
And when Hawks skipper Heath Fumberger sent down his last bowl only to knock the kitty next to a Central Wendouree bowl, the blue and reds erupted, not needing to send down Johnson's final bowl.
Bears selector Len Vincent said it was the most tense match he had ever been a part of.
"We just wanted the medal, the last thing we were thinking was about promotion next year, it was all about today," Vincent said.
"It would have to have been the most tense game I've ever been a part of.
"It really was what a grand final should be."
Such was the closeness of the match, Central Wendouree actually lost three of the four rinks for the day, with those of Greg Roberts and Eric Kosloff both going down by the barest of margins.
Fumberger's rink proved by far the most dominant, defeating the experienced Col Johnson 29-14.
However, Col Wright proved the hero of the day for the Bears, winning his rink by a whopping 19 shots over Ron Coxall.
The result sees Central Wendouree advance back to the Ballarat-Geelong premier division, having only been relegated back to division one last year.
However Vincent conceded his side might need some fine tuning if it is to remain in the top division in the long term.
"It's great to be back up the top," Vincent said.
"We could be competitive in the premier but in all honestly we probably need to attract some real top end bowlers to see us succeed there."
For City Oval, it will have to wait at least another year for its chance to get back in the top division.
For Central Wendouree however, a celebratory Mad Monday awaits.