When the temperature crept above 36 degrees on Saturday, Deer Park was rendered powerless to dictate its own fate in the Bowls Victoria premier division.
The Parkers started the round outside the top four and went in thinking that only a win would be enough for them to reach this year’s finals.
Even then, that depended on either third-placed Melbourne or fourth-placed Bundoora RSL losing – both unlikely scenarios considering they were playing bottom three sides.
Once the temperature hit 36, the chances of the Parkers and their opponents, ladder leader Essendon, returning to the greens dwindled.
The temperature continued to rise and after one hour of playing the waiting game, the heat rule was applied, the match was called a draw and nine points were distributed to both sides.
“Once it goes over 36 degrees, play is suspended and if it hasn’t come down within an hour, they call it a heat out,” Parkers president Neil Cromie said. “We couldn’t continue.”
The game was called off with Deer Park trailing narrowly 44-42.
It robbed both sides the chance to finish what had been a quality game to that point. It also pushed Deer Park ahead of Melbourne and Bundoora RSL on the live ladder.
All the Parkers could do was wait for news from the other venues and pray for a miracle.
Bundoora RSL took care of business, beating Whittlesea, so the last hope for the Parkers was getting some help from Altona who came through for them, upsetting Melbourne.
“As it worked out, we fell in the back door,” Cromie said. “We went through all the different scenarios apart from this one.
“We were the only game in premier league that got heated out.”
The Parkers will face Bundoora RSL in a cut-throat elimination final on Saturday.
“We’re going to have a red hot crack at it,” Cromie said.
MORE BOWLS NEWS