BELGRAVE will enter the final round of the FTGDCA Norm Reeves Shield in strange territory this Saturday.
For the first time in several seasons, the Magpies won't be fighting to avoid relegation.
Magpies captain Scott Vozzo led his side to an upset victory over reigning premiers Upwey-Tecoma on Saturday, taking 7-48 as the Tigers were bowled out for 114 chasing the Magpies' first day total of 210.
The win meant the Magpies are more than a game clear of bottom place, leaving The Basin and Knoxfield to fight it out to avoid relegation to Decoite Shield.
Vozzo said he was proud of his team for fighting hard across both days against the Tigers.
"For the past five years we have been fighting it out on the last day of the season," he said. "It's nice to go into the last game without having to worry about it, the players might enjoy the game more."
Vozzo said the Magpies had done the hard work at the end of the first day getting three late Tigers wickets, including captain Sam Taylor.
Vozzo said his side needed to focus on developing its young players while adding a few recruits during the off-season.
Upper Ferntree Gully was emphatic in its win over The Basin. Chasing 297, the Kings were 5-318 at the close of play. Adam Slack's 103 provided the base for the win, with Josh Henry, Marcus McDonald, and Jay Colee making contributions to a team well set for finals action.
Eildon Park made sure of the six points against Ferntree Gully with Steve Pimm taking 7-33 to break a run of three losses. The Panthers hold onto second with only percentage separating the top three.
Johnson Park cemented fourth spot with a win over Knoxfield with Adam Dobb making 56.
Knox Gardens made sure its first year in the top grade was fruitful, winning their fifth game of the year at the expense of Footballers.
In Decoite Shield, Monbulk beat Rowville with one wicket down, Blake Walter scoring 108 not out.
St Johns Tecoma finally broke a string of 24 games without a win dismissing Mountain Gate for 89, Kyle Grenda's six wickets the best performance of the game.
Norm Reeves Shield
Belgrave 210 d Upwey Tecoma 114 (Bianchi 34; Vozzo 7-48)
Upper Gully 5-318 (P Henry 80, A Slack 103, M McDonald 43, J Colee 44no) d The Basin 297 (Bowyer 122, Porch 58; Colee 6-61)
Eildon Park 259 d Ferntree Gully 9-187 (J Henry 61, M Farrukh 50; S Pimm 7-33)
Knox Gardens 6-128 (B McLean 31 S Small 34) d FTG Footballers 116
Johnson Park 5-179 (A Dobb 56) d Knoxfield 148
Monbulk 1-217 (B Walter 108no, T Watson 79) d Rowville 212
Lysterfield 8-177 (S Alston 39; R Hill 4-66) d South Belgrave 175
St Johns Tecoma 170 d Mt Gate 89 (Grenda 6-38, Lovell 3-16) and 0-56
Norm Reeves Shield Ladder: Upwey-Tecoma 54 points, 1.72 per cent; Eildon Park 54, 1.41; Upper Ferntree Gully 54, 1.25; Johnson Park 48, 1.12; Ferntree Gully 36, 1.06; Ferntree Gully Footballers 30, 0.88; Knox Gardens 30, 0.84; Belgrave 24, 0.74; Knoxfield 18, 0.73; The Basin 12, 0.68.