Bayleys Central Indians found form in the latest round of the Baywide Twenty20 competition.
The Rotorua-based side, which has twice won the T20 title, won both games in Tauranga on Saturday.
Central Indians won the first of their two matches when they bowled Cooney Lees Morgan Tauranga Boys' College out for 130 runs and got home with three wickets to spare. They went on to beat GM Painters Lake Taupo CC and now sit fifth on the points table.
Element IMF Cadets booked a berth in next week's title decider, when they also posted two wins.
First up, Cadets blasted 186 runs for the loss of just three wickets against Lake Taupo, Bay of Plenty representative batsmen Sean Davey and Joe Carter led Cadets' batting attack, with Davey smacking 93 runs and Carter getting into the 60s.
The Lake Taupo team made a reasonably determined effort to chase down the target but were restricted to 107/9 to hand Cadets a 79 run win. James Birchall grabbed three wickets at a cost of just six runs with Kamal Bains taking two wickets for 19 runs.
Carrus Mount Maunganui had a good tussle with Eves Realty Greerton before coming out on top in the round five encounter. Batting first the Mount side reached 123/7, with Ben Musgrave smacking a half century. Greerton leg-spinner James Boyd weaved plenty of magic with the ball to finish with five wickets.
The Greerton top order got their side away to a flyer, before the introduction of Mount spinners Dale Swan and Nick Smith. Swan returned figures of 3/9 with Smith also taking a three-wicket bag at a cost of 11 runs as Greerton were removed for 106.
The mid afternoon clash between Cadets and Mount Maunganui was a short and sharp affair, with Cadets removing their opponents for just 76 and cruising home with six wickets in hand. Cadets skipper Jono Boult starred with bat and ball, top scoring with an unbeaten 44 and taking two cheap wickets.
Te Puke looked to be in the box seat in their match-up with Tauranga Boys' College after posting 158/9. Tauranga Boys' two team mentors in Tim Clarke and Matt Golding simply blasted their team to victory. Golding posted an undefeated 64 with Clarke also there at the conclusion of the encounter with 59 runs, as Tauranga Boys' sealed a nine-wicket win.
With one qualifying round remaining, next Saturday, the scenario is that Cadets will secure a finals spot while sitting out the bye. If Mount Maunganui beat Te Puke, they will take the second play-off spot, with Te Puke and Greerton having theoretical chances of getting through.
Baywide T20 results - January 13
Carrus Mount Maunganui 123/7 (B Musgrave 53, D Smith 23; J Boyd 5/18) beat Eves Realty Greerton 106 (T Clout 26; D Swan 3/9, N Smith 3/11)
Cooney Lees Morgan Tauranga Boys' College 130 (M Golding 25, D Combie 22; H Gosai 3/26) lost to Bayleys Central Indians 131/7 (S Nicholls 28, A Gibbs 27no, H Gosai 24no)
Element IMF Cadets 186/3 (S Davey 93, J Carter 69) beat GM Painters Lake Taupo CC 107/9 (J Birchall 3/6, K Bains 2/19)
New World Te Puke the bye.
Carrus Mount Maunganui 76 (J Boult 2/8, S Davey 2/10) lost to Element Cadets 77/4 (J Boult 44no)
New World Te Puke 158/9 (S Crossan 56, C MacDonald 30, S Eves 29; R Mischewski 2/12, I Singh 2/12, T Carson 2/28) beat Cooney Lees Morgan Tauranga Boys' College 159/1(M Golding 64no, T Clarke 59no, M Collett 23)
Bayleys Central Indians beat GM Painters Lake Taupo CC.
Eves Realty Greerton the bye.
Baywide T20 Points Table
Cadets 19, Mount Maunganui 16, Te Puke 13, Greerton 13, Central Indians 10, Tauranga Boys College 7, Lake Taupo CC 4.