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Bowls: Premier prospects for Ballarat East

Finals battle: Ballarat East skipper Zac Stewart watches play. PICTURE: Lachlan BenceBALLARAT East is just one win away from returning to the top tier in Ballarat.

The Two Blues cruised through to the division one grand final on Saturday, subjecting Ballarat to its fourth con-

secutive Ballarat District Bowls Division straight sets finals exit.

Winning all four rinks in tight fashion, East simply proved too strong across the board, winning 103-84.

The result left Ballarat again licking its wounds after another disastrous finals series.

Ballarat has finished in the top two spots on the ladder for the last four years and this year was crowned minor premier, only to again lose two finals games and miss the grand final.

This loss means they have now lost eight con-

secutive finals matches.

Ballarat East, however, was able to celebrate as it booked its place in the season decider against City Oval next week.

East skipper Zac Stewart said while Saturday’s win may have looked simple going by the results, it was anything but.

He said he did not believe Ballarat’s finals curse had any impact on the day.

“It looked easy on paper but every rink had a real fight and we were just able to all get up,” he said.

“We weren’t worried about what they were doing or their past results; it was just about focusing on our own games.”

Should the Two Blues beat the Hawks in the grand final next week, they will return to the Ballarat-Geelong Premier Bowls Division, from which they were relegated last year.

“It’s massive for the whole club to reach the grand final,” Stewart said.

“There might actually be a few guys at the club who might not want to play premier division but we haven’t even thought about that yet.

“There is still one more game to win and we will cross that bridge if we come to it.”

In the first encounter between Ballarat East and City Oval this season, the Two Blues won the first match by two shots before City Oval turned the tide in the reverse fixture to sneak home by four shots.

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